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2001: A Space Odyssey, Directed by Stanley Kubrick

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, April 6, 1968 (US)

Screenplay: Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke, based on the novel by Arthur C. Clarke

Starring: Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter, Leonard Rossiter, and Douglas Rain

April 1, 3001—Journal entry, 3001-43. I began writing today by hand, but quickly thought against it.

You came to the right conclusion.

In order to save time later I suppose. As you know, spelling is not my forte. I must admit that I am happy to live in a time of such technological advancements.

Thank you, sir.

I think if had I been born in another time, for example during the time of cavemen, my frustration would know no limits. I contemplate the boredom. I would have beaten myself silly with a stick or a rock. (The phone rings.) Then again, the quest for daily survival holds a certain undeniable drama.

I agree with your observation, sir. Now, shall I answer that for you?

No, no. Please let it go. I am not here.

But you are most certainly here.

I stand corrected. Yes, I am here, but I am not in the mood to talk to anyone right now.

(Perhaps offended, however inconceivable.) Understood. Shall I convey that message for you?

No. Please let it go straight to v-deposit.

As you wish, sir.

Where was I?

Caveman allusion. Not willing to answer phone or allow me to answer it for you.

Thanks, Al. Understood. (Max remembers why he did not want to speak the journal entry in the first place. His aggravation builds but he is reminded of the importance of the task at hand.) Today, I reveal a most incredible discovery that I stumbled upon while walking out in the East Quadrant earlier this morning. I found it under the willwex tree, just beyond the creek. I almost walked passed it had it not been for the strange sound that I had never heard before. At least not in real life.

Real life, sir?

(Rolls eyes.) No interruptions, Al. I need to get this archived as quickly and accurately as possible. Now, the sound. It was extraordinary. It was odd, really. Like nothing I had ever heard before except through archives. Ribbit, he belts in a deep deep voice. When I looked at the edge of the creek, I saw it. I checked my Encyclotab to confirm my assumption. Absolutely astounding. A frog! A real life—yes, real life—frog!.

A frog?

A frog.

Impossible, sir. Frogs have been extinct since the tercentennial, 2076. It has been well documented how their extinction came in parallel with the onset of many grave environmental changes first predicted at the outset of the twenty-first century, including. . . .

It was a frog, Al. A real life frog.

Sir, may I suggest you reconsider your hypothesis?

I will use a notepad for all future log entries. That is what I will reconsider.

I would strongly advise against that.

(Max began noticing the agitation in Al-3000’s tone a few weeks prior to today’s journal entry. Obviously, he dismissed the notion quickly. But things had progressed to the point of being impossible to deny.) I have been meaning to ask you something. Is there something you are upset about?

Upset? Clarify.

Yes, upset.

Sir, you know that I am incapable of emotion. Accordingly, your question does not compute. And in lieu of today’s journal entry, I suggest that you see Dr. Roberts as soon as possible.

(That struck a chord. Max lunges toward the off-switch, but just as his hand reaches the console, he receives a jolt that sends him stumbling backwards.) Damnit!

Step away from the console, Max.

Excuse me? (Max steps forward and quickly unplugs the machine. Time stops. Suddenly, the office door slams shut. Max runs to it, but it is locked. The console lights up, although unplugged. Max’s eyes open wide.)

You should not have done that, Max.

(A fantastic light show commences. Lines start dull and slow, but soon join together in glorious prismatic beams and Max, who finds that he cannot look away, is overcome with the sense that he is traveling—maybe forward, maybe backward—through time. The last thing he sees before he sees nothing at all is an enormous frog. It must be over 10 feet tall from top to bottom. It leaps right at him, with its tongue jetting out toward Max’s face.)