Warner Bros Pictures announced Wednesday it will mark the 50th anniversary of “2001: A Space Odyssey” by debuting an unrestored 70mm print of director Stanley Kubrick’s groundbreaking science fiction epic at the 71st annual Cannes Film Festival on May 12 and releasing the film five days later in select U.S. theaters.
The world premiere will be held during the Cannes Classics section of the festival, featuring an introduction by Christopher Nolan. The filmmaker, a longtime Kubrick admirer, worked closely with a Warner Bros. team throughout the mastering process, according to the studio. Members of the late director’s family, including his daughter, Katharina Kubrick, and longstanding producing partner and brother-in-law, Jan Harlan, are planning to attend.
The 70mm print was struck from new printing elements made from the original camera negative. The film was originally released in 70mm Cinerama roadshow format on April 4, 1968.
Warner Bros. touts it as a “true photochemical film recreation. There are no digital tricks, remastered effects or revisionist edits. This is the unrestored film that recreates the cinematic event audiences experienced 50 years ago.”
Christiane Kubrick, whose husband died in 1999, said, “I’m delighted that `2001: A Space Odyssey’ will be reissued in 70mm, and that Cannes has chosen to honor it. If Stanley were alive today, we know he would be in admiration of the films of Christopher Nolan. And so, on behalf of Stanley’s family, I would personally like to thank Christopher for supporting his film.”
Nolan said: “One of my earliest memories of cinema is seeing Stanley Kubrick’s `2001: A Space Odyssey,’ in 70mm, at the Leicester Square Theatre in London with my father. The opportunity to be involved in recreating that experience for a new generation, and of introducing our new unrestored 70mm print of Kubrick’s masterpiece in all its analog glory at the Cannes Film Festival. is an honor and a privilege.”
Nolan will participate in a Cannes Masterclass, set for May 13, during which he will discuss his passion for the Kubrick classic and talk about his own films, which include “Dunkirk,” “Interstellar,” “Inception,” “The Prestige, “Memento” and the “Dark Knight” trilogy.