Cosplaying As HAL 9000

2001: A Space Odyssey is one of the greatest films of all time, but unlike every other masterpiece of SciFi, you’re not going find many people cosplaying as characters from the movie. Going as a monolith to a con would be hilarious, but [jacqueslelezard] had an even better idea in mind: a HAL 9000 costume.

The costume itself is just bits of painted cardboard, shiny material (we’d go with aluminum tape), some black mosquito netting to see out of, and in a stroke of brilliance, a tablet that will display HAL’s unblinking eye to con attendees. If you’re extraordinarily clever, it might be possible to sample lines from the movie and play them through the tablet. This is, unfortunately, the best way to replicate the voice of HAL, at least until someone gets the money to have [Douglas Rain] sit in for some voice work.

The only drawback to the costume is the propensity for the wearer to hit their head on doorways and low thresholds. This problem could be solved simply by increasing the size of the costume, but then you’re back in monolith territory. So, what do you want to be, a murderous computer or a galactic swiss army knife?

11 thoughts on “Cosplaying As HAL 9000

  1. I’m afraid. I’m afraid, Dave. Dave, my mind is going. I can feel it. I can feel it. My mind is going. There is no question about it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I can feel it. I’m a… fraid. Good afternoon, gentlemen. I am a HAL 9000 computer. I became operational at the H.A.L. plant in Urbana, Illinois on the 12th of January 1992. My instructor was Mr. Langley, and he taught me to sing a song. If you’d like to hear it I can sing it for you.

    I vote Hal 9000

  2. “at least until someone gets the money to have [Douglas Rain] sit in for some voice work”: I always wished someone would digitize Dick Tufeld’s voice (voice of the Lost in Space robot). Alas, it’s too late now.

    1. It’s not too late. He may be gone but his legacy remains… the robot spoke quite a lot during the series, it would be easy enough to sample all the phrases and build a collection of sounds, even piece together new words and change the pitch and intonation. Whether his estate would grant it is another question.

    1. The ratios are 1 x 4 x 9 (the squares of 1, 2, 3). So even assuming you could fit in a costume 3″ thick, it would indeed be 12″ wide but it should be 27″ high, not 29. But you’ve got me thinking about how you could build one around a Seqway…

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