Top 27 A Space Odyssey Movie Facts

Following is our collection of A Space Odyssey facts. Handpicked and verified, these little-known details can be obscure enough most people will miss. These behind the scene easter eggs and hidden messages will give you another view of A Space Odyssey film message.

In 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), HAL only takes control of the ship once Dave and Frank are both no longer on board; this is because HAL is following his programming and can only have authority once his superiors are not present
In 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), HAL only takes control of the ship once Dave and Frank are both no longer on board; this is because HAL is following his programming and can only have authority once his superiors are not present
In 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), when Dave is pulling out HAL's chips, HAL regresses in time. Eventually, HAL starts singing "Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer please" ("On a Bicycle Built for Two"). This was the first song ever sung by a computer in the real world.
In 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), when Dave is pulling out HAL's chips, HAL regresses in time. Eventually, HAL starts singing "Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer please" ("On a Bicycle Built for Two"). This was the first song ever sung by a computer in the real world.

A Space Odyssey Trivia

These trivia from Reddit and other sources can be used as questions with answers in quizzes or games.

  1. - The famous bone to spacecraft transition was thought up by Stanley Kubrick one day when he was throwing a broomstick up into the air. Also, the spacecraft has a bone shape at the top. Many believe to be a nuclear weapon, man's first weapon followed by it's ultimate.

  2. HAL is an exact letter down from IBM. IBM were consultants for the film and their logo is scene throughout the movie. Clarke and Kubrick claim HAL's name to just be a coincidence though.

  3. : At one point in the film, the computer HAL begins to sing 'Daisy Bell.' This was the first song ever 'sung' by a computer.

A Space Odyssey Easter Eggs

Hidden objects, characters, easter eggs, and their meanings are wonderful ways to discover the filmmaker's perspectives of any given movie.

  • 1 - The climactic shot where Dave reaches out to the monolith mirrors the Creation of Adam by Michelangelo.
    The climactic shot where Dave reaches out to the monolith mirrors the Creation of Adam by Michelangelo.

A Space Odyssey Hidden Details

1 - Frank and Dave use devices that look remarkably like tablet computers to watch an interview of themselves.
Frank and Dave use devices that look remarkably like tablet computers to watch an interview of themselves.
1 - When the computer HAL plays chess, it makes minor mistakes describing the following moves conducting to its win, foreshadowing its upcoming miscalculations
When the computer HAL plays chess, it makes minor mistakes describing the following moves conducting to its win, foreshadowing its upcoming miscalculations

Stanley Kubrick can be seen in the reflection of Haywood Floyd's visor

1 - All 3 pods are lost in space. (1st hit Frank, 2nd was left outside when Dave entered the emergency entrance, and 3rd entered the star gate) however in 2010: The Year we Make Contact, a pod was built and placed in the pod bay. (A mistake by the prop department)
All 3 pods are lost in space. (1st hit Frank, 2nd was left outside when Dave entered the emergency entrance, and 3rd entered the star gate) however in 2010: The Year we Make Contact, a pod was built and placed in the pod bay. (A mistake by the prop department)

Kier Dullea's character ages drastically. Fifty years later compare the real aging with the makeup.

1 - Astronaut Dave Bowman reads an article describing the crash of a hypersonic jet. Despite being completely illegible in the shot, an actual text was produced for the film.
Astronaut Dave Bowman reads an article describing the crash of a hypersonic jet. Despite being completely illegible in the shot, an actual text was produced for the film.

HAL actually foreshadows his actions when playing chess against Frank, saying "I'm sorry Frank, I think you missed it: queen to bishop three, bishop takes queen, knight takes bishop, mate." HAL is actually cheating and Frank does stand a chance of winning.

HAL's last words are from "Daisy (A Bicycle Built for Two)". The Discovery is a ship designed to have two captains.

During the space travel scene, people can be seen moving around inside the Orion 3 Spaceplane from the outside

HAL tries to extract personal secrets from Dave using nearly identical language as is used by the Russian scientist trying to extract secrets from Floyd earlier in the film.

The name of the "character" HAL 9000, has been chosen by Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke in reference of the IBM 360, a calculator from the 60's, the ancestor of our modern computers. Actually, the letters H A L correspond to I B M when you shift them by a letter forward.

While playing chess HAL both makes a subtle mistake in the use of descriptive notation to describe a move, and deceives Frank about the inevitable checkmate in two moves.

1 - During the sequence in which Dave deactivates HAL, HAL goes through the 5 stages of grief, with his dialogue in the scene referencing denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally, acceptance. [dialogue in comments]
During the sequence in which Dave deactivates HAL, HAL goes through the 5 stages of grief, with his dialogue in the scene referencing denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally, acceptance. [dialogue in comments]

The legendary song "Thus Spoke Zarathustra" by Richard Strauss was named after Thus Spoke Zarathustra: A Book for All and None by Friedrich Nietzsche, which directly inspired the story of 2001.

Kubrick wrote the instructions for using a toilet in Zero Gravity despite the camera never zooming in on it in the film

When HAL 9000 is deactivated he sings the song "Daisy Belle". This song happens to be the first song ever "sung" by a computer, by an IBM 704 in 1961 (seven years before the film)

The bone thrown in the air changes direction on the way down.

At the end of the airlock decompression re-entry scene, David Bowman (Keir Dullea) couldn't help but crack a smile.

During the Floyd Section discussion with the Russian scientists, a continuity error was caught during editing. Stanley Kubrick then intentionally add a public address voice announcing that a blue ladies cashmere sweater has been found.

I found a striking similarity between a rock in a landscape shot in 2001: A Space Oddessey(1968) and the famous porcelain phallus in A Clockwork Orange(1971)

A Space Odyssey poster
A Space Odyssey poster

A Space Odyssey Plot

After discovering a mysterious artifact buried beneath the Lunar surface, mankind sets off on a quest to find its origins with help from intelligent supercomputer H.A.L. 9000.

Cast and Details

Here are the full cast and crew of A Space Odyssey. The goofs, crazy credits, and trivia they have performed may have not taken your attention. Some are hidden for a reason, while others randomly forgotten.

Genre Adventure, Sci-Fi
Director Stanley Kubrick
Stars Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter
IMDB score 8.3