Things to Come - Photo Gallery, 2036
by Nick Cooper © 2004-2017
Presented here are a number of stills from the author's collection, broadly
divided into actual general production or publicity stills, along with reprints
from various publications of examples specifically from "lost" scenes. Where
appropriate, they are accompanied with explanatory text, in which extracts
from the Film Story or Stover Script in
green denotes footage surviving in the 92m 42s print,
blue in the Gutlohn
Print but not the 92m 42s Standard Print,
purple is the apparently lost Stover Script
material (i.e. not in 92m 42s or Gutlohn), while
red is dialogue and description unique to the Film
The rebel artist Theotocopulos works on his massive statue.
Oswald Cabal meets with the Space Gun engineers to discuss the Moon mission....
... before they are joined by prospective astronaut Maurice Passworthy.
For years it was thought that the photograph below was simply a generic image
of the Everytown of 2036, and it frequently appeared to illustrate the film
in books and magazines, and on home video packaging. The realisation that
Raymond Massey and Edward Chapman are visible amongst the crowds at the
bottom-right of the image, however, indicates that it must be from the long
sequence when Oswald Cabal and Raymond Passworthy walk through the "City
Ways" en route to meet their respective children.
One of the most glaringly-obvious of lost scenes is that in which Oswald
Cabal meets with his estranged wife, Rowena, played by Margaretta Scott in
addition to her earlier role as Roxana. As with the Pestilence Years section,
the bulk of the 2036 sequence was similarly rearranged so that the televised
speech by Theotocopulos appears before Oswald Cabal meets with Raymond
Passworthy, before they are joined by Catherine Cabal and Maurice Passworthy.
The latter leads into their sudden decision to leave for the Moon early when
the riot begins, but in actual fact the footage of supposedly one discussion
is actual from two much longer scenes, set several days apart. As scripted,
the first of these meetings (at an "Athletic Club") was followed by Oswald's
meeting with Rowena, Theotocopulos's speech, Cabal meeting with Controller
of Traffic Morden Mitani, and then the second of the Cabal/Passworthy
meetings - over dinner in Cabal's private chambers - shortly before the riot
The longer scene with Mitani explains why Ivan Brandt is credited on screen
with the role, despite the fact that in the extant footage he actually appears
less than some other actors who aren't billed at all. The fact that he does
appear in the credits points to the removal of this scene been a very late
decision, and the same applies to Margaretta Scott's second role. Surprisingly,
there are a great many many photographs from the Oswald/Rowena meeting scene,
and indeed the image of Scott as this character (rather than Roxana) was
used extensively in the original and indeed subsequent publicity for the
film. This continues to this day, as witnessed by the numerous video releases
with artwork featuring her lost role.
The lost bridging material follows on from the footage retained in the
Passworthy: "That man Theotocopulos
is right. This thing mustn't be. It is human
sacrifice. Maurice, my son!"
Cabal takes his arm.
Cabal: "There is still a month and more ahead of us. Let
us talk it over calmly, Passworthy. There is a month yet. This is a shock
to you. It was a shock for me. But perhaps it is less dreadful - and something
greater - than you think. Consider it for a day or so. Let us all dine together
- let us meet in three days' time, and tell each other plainly all that we
have in our minds."
Cabal is shown in close-up with Passworthy:
"I won't come back to the city with you. There is someone else to whom I
must talk. I have to talk."
Passworthy: "No one is as closely interested as we are."
Cabal: "I don't know. She has a kind of claim. Many people
would say it was as strong a claim as ours."
Passworthy: "And who is that?"
Cabal: "Catherine's mother. The woman who used to be my
wife. . . . Didn't you know I had a wife? Or do you think Catherine came
suddenly out of my head? Like Pallas Athene? I had a wife and she was very
much a woman and we parted years ago."
Evening passes to twilight. After-sunset
glow in the sky. A terrace with clipped yew trees (new type of yew) looking
out over a wide landscape with the sea in the distance. Standing out against
the sea is a huge heavy mortar-like structure. This is the Space Gun. It
is our first sight of this. It crouches monstrously, dwarfing every other
detail in the landscape. A certain mistiness enhances, if anything, its
An aeroplane sweeps down and its shadow passed across
A momentary glimpse is given of Cabal descending from
the plane he has flown to this place. Then the camera returns to the terrace
to await him.
Cabal enters and walks slowly to the terraced balustrade.
He stands musing, looking at the Space Gun. His hands are behind his back.
So he remains for some moments.
He turns at a footfall and Rowena enters. Rowena is the
descendant of Roxana, the favourite of the Boss of Everytown in 1970, just
as Oswald Cabal is the descendant of John Cabal. She is physically like her
prototype - the part is played by the same actress - but she has none of
the arms-akimbo dash of her ancestress. She is better bred. She is dressed
much more beautifully and with nothing of Roxana's sluttish magnificence,
and her gestures are well under control.
Rowena: "And so at last I am permitted
to see you again."
Cabal: "You heard the news quickly, Rowena."
Rowena: "It is all over the world now."
Rowena: "On the air everywhere. The whole world talks
of nothing else. Why have you done this thing to me? Our daughter!"
Cabal: "I did not do this to you. She determined to go.
What do you want with me?"
Rowena: "You are a monster. You and your kind are monsters.
Your science and your new orders have taken away your souls and put machines
and theories in the place of them. It is well I left you when I did."
Cabal: "And you have come here - you have insisted on
seeing me in order to tell me that - now."
Rowena: "Not only that. I forbid you to send our daughter
on this mad expedition."
Cabal: "Our daughter! My daughter. You left
her to me when you went away. And she goes - of her own free will."
Rowena: "Because you have poisoned her mind. She, I suppose,
is one of the new sort of women just as you are one of the new sort of men.
Do you think I do not care for her, simply because you have never let me
Cabal: "Usually you have been on the other side of the
Rowena: "Reproach me! All the same I care. Who left me
love-hungry?. . . . Cabal, have you no pity? Have you no imagination? If
I cannot forbid - well, then I implore. Think of that body of hers
- scarcely more than a child's body - crushed, broken, frozen!"
Cabal: "I won't. One can think too much of bodies,
Rowena: "Hard you are and terrible. What are you doing
with life, Cabal?"
Cabal: "Soft you are and sensuous. What are you doing
Rowena: "You turn it to steel."
Cabal: "You fritter it away."
Rowena: "Who made me fritter it away? I have been wanting
to meet you face to face for years, and have this out with you. I hated leaving
you. But you made life too high and hard for me."
Cabal: "I hated your going. But you made life too distracted
and vexatious for me. I loved you - but loving you was an all-time task.
I had work to do."
Rowena: "What work?"
Cabal: "The everlasting work of fighting danger and death
and decay for mankind."
Rowena: "Fanatic! Where are danger and death to-day?"
Cabal: "In ambush everywhere."
Rowena: "You go out to meet them."
Cabal: "I had rather be the hunter than the hunted."
Rowena: "But if you are hunting danger and death all the
time, what is there left of life?"
Cabal: "Courage, adventure, work - and an increasing power
Rowena: "Give me love."
Cabal: "You left me for that. Poor
love-huntress. My love wasn't good enough - not flattering enough - not sedulous
enough. Have you ever found that love of your dreams? Was there ever a lover
who made you feel as glorious as you wanted to be? Could any lover do that?
Wherever you found love, you gripped it as a child plucks a flower - and
you killed it."
Rowena: "Have I been anything but human?"
Rowena: "I have loved after my nature. Even if
at last I have to grow old and die."
Cabal: "But let me live after my nature. You may
want love, but I want the stars."
Rowena: "But love too! You wanted human love once,
Cabal: "I wanted my work more."
Rowena: "But isn't that girl of ours at least human? As
I am? Isn't she entitled to the freshness of life - to the novelty of life?
Is she to begin where you leave off? Suppose after all love does come
to an end - gets found out? Why shouldn't she have her years of delusion
Cabal: "And end in futility? Left behind by all your loving?
Painted? In all imitation of youth? Clinging to passion?"
Rowena: "Oh, you can sting. Which of the two is futility?
To obey your impulses or deny them? That girl, I tell you, is a human being,
and she has to follow the human way. She's a woman."
Cabal: "Not one of the old sort, Rowena.
Not of your sort. Do you think that everything else in human life is going
to alter, scale and power and speed, and men and women remain as they have
always been? This is a New World we are living in. It drives to new and greater
destinies. And that desperate old love story which has been acted and told
so often, as though it was the very core of life, is almost finished with."
Rowena: "And you think she has finished with it?"
Cabal: "What do you know of our daughter? What do you
know, you love-huntress, of the creative drive a woman can feel as well as
a man? She has loved and she loves; she has found a mate and they are driving
on together. Shoulder to shoulder. Almost forgetting each other in their
happy identification. She lives for the endless adventure - as he lives for
the endless adventure. And that is the increase of human knowledge and power
- for ever. . . ."
Rowena: "Cabal, all men are fools about women. All of
them. That girl of yours. And your endless adventure! You think she is a
new sort of woman. There is no new sort of woman. She flies off - with her
lover. Well, what sort of woman wouldn't - old sort or new sort? What could
be more glorious?"
Cabal: "Anyhow she shall fly off."
Rowena: "The new sort of man seems to me to be very like
the old sort of mule. Now tell me, tell me, if men are going to give themselves
to this everlasting adventure of yours, what is to become of women?"
Cabal: "There's no sex in that sort of adventure. It is
as open to you as it is to us. Drop the old sex romance. Come and work with
Rowena: "Work with you!"
Cabal: "Why not? You have hands and brains."
Rowena: "You mean, my dear, work for you. There
speaks the old sort of man asking woman to be his slave. When it comes to
women, is the new sort of man any different from the old?"
Cabal: "Why for us and not with us?"
Rowena: "Because you men have a way of taking the lead
and getting hold of things."
Cabal: "Very well! For us if you like. And why
not? Pick your man for the work he does, and the powers he has. Follow him
and be his woman?"
Rowena: "We, we women, are to help and comfort and cherish
- play the role of handmaid - to the end of things?"
Cabal: "If that's how you are made, and it seems to be
how you are made; why not?"
Rowena: "It isn't how we are made."
Cabal: "If you are not made for knowledge and power as
men are, if you are not made to serve knowledge and power, then what on earth
are you made for? If you are more than a love-huntress, what do you
dream you are hunting?"
Rowena: "Oh, we argued like this fifteen years ago?"
Cabal: "Fifteen years ago! This argument began before
the Stone Age."
Rowena: "And it will end----! Will it ever end?"
Cabal: "Never for us, Rowena. Never - for generations
yet. You go your way after your fashion-and I go mine."
Rowena: "And that is your last word for me - you who once
knelt at my feet!"
Old memories come back to Cabal, a rush of forgotten emotions.
He turns towards her. He seems full of things he cannot express and he says
Fade out of the two facing each other in the twilight,
man and woman, bereaved of all the illusion they ever had for one another
and still - perplexed.
The base of the Space Gun as the mob of Theotocopulos's followers swarm round
it. The model Gun stood over six feet tall, and was built on the back-lot
at Denham. Note the hanging monorail and car lower-right.
In the extant footage, the actual firing of the Space Gun seems something
of an anti-climax, but Wells's Film Treatment envisaged more dramatic
Commotion of people clearing out
of the way. At a distance, they pause to look back. Then a re-arrangement
of all the people to show passage of time. It has grown darker and the clouds
have moved. Stillness.
The gun fires.
Whirlwind. Collapse of a subsidiary fabric of girders.
Theotocopulos and his staff are seen buffeted and torn
by the wild rush of air.
Cloaks, sun hats, papers, banners, light gadgets, straws,
dead leaves, everything, flying wild.
By the publication of the Film Story, this had been toned down:
The table and the hand in the
observation chamber. The seconds hand of the clock dial moves towards a marked
point. As it does so the finger extends and presses a button.
Large scale effects of concussion. Gun recoiling. Whirlwind
sweeping the crowd.
Theotocopulos, standing out against the sky on a great
metal girder, is caught in the whirlwind, and his cloak is blown over his
head. He is left struggling ridiculously in his own cloak, and that is the
last that is seen of him.
Clouds of dust obscure the screen and clear to show the
crowd after the shock. Some press their ears as if they were painful, others
stare under their hands up into the sky.
Then the crowd begins to stream back towards the city.
Shots of them re-entering the city, in a straggling aimless manner, and pausing
ever and again to stare at the sky.
What we have now been left with is the Gun actually firing and some reverse
smoke effects, but at least one photograph - of Theotocopulos's followers
being felled by the concussion in the tunnels beneath the Gun - survives:
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