Coinciding with the 50th anniversary of 2001: A Space Odyssey, footage has been unearthed of film director Stanley Kubrick explaining the infamous ending of the 1968 film. What caused huge controversy during its early premier – with 250 critics walking out – is now one of the most popular sci-fi films of all time.

The ending involved Dr. David Bowman getting sucked into a Star Gate, trapped in a neoclassical French room then turned into a fetus known as the Star Child, and fans continued to speculate what it all meant – until now. Kubrick never explained the ending, telling Playboy that “I don’t want to spell out a verbal road map for 2001 that every viewer will feel obligated to pursue or else fear he’s missed the point.” Now, a rare video of a phone interview with Japanese TV personality Jun’ichi Yaio during a paranormal documentary, has surfaced on Reddit, and amongst one hour of footage, Kubrick explains the ending of the film.

“The idea was supposed to be that he is taken in by god-like entities, creatures of pure energy and intelligence with no shape or form. They put him in what I suppose you could describe as a human zoo to study him, and his whole life passes from that point on in that room. And he has no sense of time. It just seems to happen as it does in the film”, explained Kubrick.

“…when they get finished with him…he is transformed into some kind of super being and sent back to Earth, transformed and made into some sort of superman. We have to only guess what happens when he goes back. It is the pattern of a great deal of mythology, and that is what we were trying to suggest.”

So there you have it. Maybe it’s time to re-watch the film. Be right back.