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“Even as Kubrick and his team—including cinematographer Geoffrey Unsworth and art director John Hoesli—were creating a fictive future set in space, NASA was racing to put a man on the moon. The set and props in 2001: A Space Odyssey had to dramatically outpace the emerging technology, lest NASA succeed while they were filming and make Kubrick’s vision appear outdated, or, worse, flat-out wrong.

This forced Kubrick’s team to do deep, meticulous research, which Bizony says helps explain why much of the set design accurately forecasted how we live with technology today. ‘The executive briefcase with its phone handset and dial? Look closely, and all the elements of the laptop or smartphone are there, half a century ahead of time,’ Bizony tells WIRED. You could also, for example, see HAL 9000 as a proto-Siri.”

The Amazingly Accurate Futurism of 2001: A Space Odyssey

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