Arthur C. Clarke Is Born
Sri Lankabhimanya Sir Arthur Charles Clarke, CBE, FRAS (16 December 1917 – 19 March 2008) was a British science fiction author, inventor, and futurist, most famous for the novel 2001: A Space Odyssey, written in collaboration with director Stanley Kubrick, a collaboration which also produced the film of the same name; and as a host and commentator in the British television series Mysterious World.
Clarke served in the Royal Air Force as a radar instructor and technician from 1941–1946, proposed satellite communication systems in 1945 which won him the Franklin Institute Stuart Ballantine Gold Medal in 1963. He was the chairman of the British Interplanetary Society from 1947–1950 and again in 1953. Later, he helped fight for the preservation of lowland gorillas.
Clarke emigrated to Sri Lanka in 1956 largely to pursue his interest in scuba diving, and lived there until his death. He was knighted by the British monarchy in 1998, and was awarded Sri Lanka's highest civil honour, Sri Lankabhimanya, in 2005.
Arthur C. Clarke's Mysterious World is an acclaimed thirteen part British television series looking at unexplained phenomena from around the world. It was produced by Yorkshire Television for the ITV network and first broadcast in September 1980.
Each program is introduced and book-ended by science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke in short sequences filmed in Sri Lanka. However, the bulk of the episodes are narrated by Gordon Honeycombe. The series was produced by John Fanshawe, John Fairley and directed by Peter Jones, Michael Weigall and Charles Flynn. It also featured a unique soundtrack composed by British artist Alan Hawkshaw.
In 1981, Book Club Associates published a hardcover book with the same name, authored by Fairley and Welfare, where the contents of the show were further explored. It featured an introduction written by Sir Arthur as well as his remarks at the end of each chapter or topic. In 1985, a paperback of this book was released by HarperCollins Publishers.
The series was followed by Arthur C. Clarke's World of Strange Powers in 1985 and Arthur C. Clarke's Mysterious Universe in 1994.