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2001: A Space Odyssey

Collection Issue Date: 14th June 2018

Marking the 50th Anniversary of Stanley Kubrick's groundbreaking film

Isle of Man Post Office is delighted to mark the 50th anniversary of Stanley Kubrick's groundbreaking film '2001: A Space Odyssey' (1968), ranked as one of the best films of all time, with a special collection of stamps, each one like the film itself, layered with hidden secrets embedded in microscopic form.

Issue Information

This British-made film was released to UK Audiences in 1968, one year before the moon landing. Audiences were stunned by the effects used and the sheer vision of writer Arthur C. Clarke and filmmaker Stanley Kubrick.

Clarke inspired the film with his book 'The Sentinel' and is also partly responsible for starting the Isle of Man's space industry. He inspired Chris Stott to set up his satellite company ManSat and was also Chancellor of the International Space University when the chapter on the Island was formed with Chris at the helm. The Isle of Man has a thriving space industry, that includes communication with geostationary satellites, an area of research in which Arthur C .Clarke was a leader.

We have been honoured to work with Warner Brothers and through them the Kubrick family, to create a set of stamps that are respectful of the genre, the film and its makers, as well as the millions of fans in the UK and beyond.

The series of eight stamps depicts some of the most iconic imagery and themes from the film: the 20p stamp shows Stanley Kubrick in the midst of creating movie magic. On the 30p stamp, revered sci-fi author Arthur C. Clarke whose short story, 'The Sentinel', from which '2001' was adapted, is pictured on the set, standing in front of the pod.

The 52p stamp features the docking scene at Space Station V, decades before today's ISS was a reality. The 75p stamp has the 'monolith, a featureless yet menacing black structure that provides the time link between past, present and future, that adds so much to the tension in the film.

Heather Downham who played one of the space stewardesses who feature on the 83p stamp, recalled hearing an intake of breath at the premiere, so astounded were cinema audiences at the portrayal of weightlessness in space.

Another one of the defining images is the Star Child, featured on the £1.40 stamp; is this the future of humanity? It is for you to decide. On the £1.93 stamp is astronaut and main character Dr. Dave Bowman, played by actor Kier Dullea. He said later about the film, "It set the benchmark for everything else."

The main theme of tension in '2001' is derived from the interplay between the human characters and the artificial intelligence, HAL 9000. His all-seeing, all-hearing red 'eye', is featured on the £2.01 stamp.

The theme of the film came from Kubrick's own fascination with the Moon and the possibility that an alien life force had visited Earth centuries ago, perhaps before man, choosing the arid and airless surface of the Moon to leave clues, calling cards with evidence that mankind was not alone, that intelligent life had existed before and already mastered the art of intergalactic space travel.

Kubrick knew exactly what his film should look like and the message it was going to deliver as he takes the audience on a mind-bending journey through space and time.

In true Kubrickesque style, each of the '2001' stamps issued by the Isle of Man Post Office contains a message, a secret code hidden to the naked eye. Fans of this collection are challenged to find the following quotes;

1) The only way to discover the limits of the possible is to go beyond them into the impossible.
2) The most terrifying fact about the universe is not that it is hostile but that it is indifferent.
3) Open the pod bay doors please HAL.
4) Eighteen months ago the first evidence of intelligent life off the Earth was discovered.
5) Thank you. You are cleared through Voiceprint Identification.
6) My God, it's full of stars!
7) I've just picked up a fault in the AE35 unit
8) I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that

Technical Information

Text Austin Mutti-Mewse, Benedict Glazier
Design Glazier Design
Printer Cartor
Process Offset lithography
Colours 4 plus two security inks
Paper 110gms PVA gummed
Perforations 13 per 2cms
Stamp Size 32 x 40mm
No of stamps 8
Format Sheets of 10
Issue date 14.06.18

Collection Products

2001: A Space Odyssey Printers Imperforate Uncut Stamp Sheet (Including sheetlet)
2001: A Space Odyssey Printers Imperforate Uncut Stamp Sheet (Including sheetlet)

Product Code: WJ45
Product Issue Date: 14th June 2018

The opportunity to own a printer's pane, in a strictly limited edition of 300 is incredibly rare. These sheets come uncut from the printers and are how the stamps run.


Price: £250.00

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