Ronnie Corbett: A Space Monkey?

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Did Ronnie Corbett play one of the apes in 2001: A Space Odyssey?

No. He was considered for the rôle, though. According to Dan Richter's book Moonwatcher's Memoir, about the making of the `Dawn of Man' sequence in the film, Kubrick tried a variety of ways to get convincing apes on film:

``He had some skinny black teenagers made up to look like apes,'' Keith [Hamshere, stills photographer for the movie] says. ``Stanley's friend Roger Caras, the publicist, and the powers that be at MGM thought that it was a potential PR disaster.

``Then he made up Penny Brahams, who played the stewardess in the shuttle to the space station. Penny was a real sport. Stuart [Freeborn, a makeup artist] made her up and she didn't have much on.

``He even had Ronnie Corbett, the TV comedian, come out to the studio. Stuart made him up and Stanley shot some tests. Nothing came of that....''

I'm not really sure what to make of this. I assume he wouldn't have worn his glasses when wearing the monkey suit.

Copyright (c) 2003 Chris Lightfoot. All rights reserved.