The following is a list of notable films that were modified by the studio after their original theatrical release, particularly films that were edited without the director's permission or involvement. In some cases, these recuts were done by the filmmaker(s).

Silent era Edit

  • Greed (1924) - Recut for time from 9½ hours to 140 minutes. A 239 minute version was released in 1999. The complete director's cut is impossible to assemble as the footage has since been destroyed; stills of the missing scenes filled in for the 239-minute version. This is considered the "Holy Grail" of "lost" movies.
  • The Phantom of the Opera (1925) - Recut by Universal on the advice of Lon Chaney when they found themselves unhappy with Rupert Julian's direction, as well as fearing that a gothic melodrama would not recoup the film's massive budget. The film was partially reshot and recut into an action/romantic comedy, but when the preview audiences booed this version off the screen, some of the new elements were deleted and some of the older deleted material was cut back into the film, though still missing much of the subplots and various crucial scenes and characters. The film went through further re-editing and re-shooting in 1928, marking an even further departure from the original cut shown briefly in late 1924. The intended cut of the film is impossible to assemble as footage was destroyed more than 80 years ago.
  • Metropolis (1927) - Recut from 210 minutes in its original 1927 version release to 139 minutes, 123 minutes, 117 minutes, 115 minutes and 94 minutes in several versions over the decades; another version featuring a soundtrack by Giorgio Moroder and color-tinted frames was released in 1984 and runs 87 minutes. A restored version was released in 2001 and runs 147 minutes - which had been the closest possible to the original director's cut until the recent rediscovery of a 16 mm print of the complete, uncut version in South America.

Sound eraEdit


  • All Quiet on the Western Front (1930) - Originally 131 minutes, heavily re-edited for theatrical reissue to 105 minutes, with music added to film's ending against the wishes of director Lewis Milestone. Restored in 1998 in a version closer to the original release and removing the music from the final scene.
  • King Kong (1933) - Several minutes of objectionable footage deleted for subsequent reissue. One other sequence (the "Spider Sequence") was shot but deleted; that footage is considered lost (however, it has been recreated for its DVD release by Peter Jackson, director of the 2005 version). Approximate director's cut now available on DVD and television.
  • A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935) - Roadshow version released at 133 minutes; general release version was expertly edited by the studio to 117 minutes. The roadshow version was found in 1994, and is now available on DVD.
  • Show Boat - The Act I Finale "Happy the Day", the song "Why Do I Love You?", a brief reprise of Ol' Man River, and about half of the final musical sequence were cut from the 1936 film version before release.
  • Lost Horizon (1937) - Recut for subsequent reissue to remove subtext reference of the times; negatives to missing scenes deteriorated in the 1960s. Current restored version contains complete soundtrack and some of the cut footage; for the still-missing scenes, its original soundtrack plays against stills representing the lost footage.
  • The Wizard of Oz (1939) - see full Wikipedia entry. Never released at its sneak-preview length of 121 minutes; was first scaled down to 112 minutes, then to its standard running time of 101 minutes. Virtually all of the audio survives and is part of the 2-CD Deluxe Edition of the soundtrack album, but the video footage of the edited portions has been lost.


  • Fantasia (1940) - Originally edited for general release from 124 minutes (plus 15 minute intermission) to 120 minutes without intermission, then re-released at 84 minutes. The film was subsequently restored to 120 minutes, but a complete original version reconstruction is no longer possible due to some Taylor dialogue being lost. Current DVD release alters shots in the Pastoral Symphony segment and redubs all of Taylor's dialogue, but otherwise visually restoring all footage seen in the original 1940 release; this is most complete version that exists.
  • The Devil and Daniel Webster (1941) - Originally released as All That Money Can Buy, and subsequently re-released many times under the titles Here Is A Man, Daniel and the Devil, and The Devil and Daniel Webster, the film premiered at 107 minutes, and was subsequently very crudely edited down to 85 minutes after it flopped at the box office. The film has since been restored to its full length.
  • The Magnificent Ambersons (1942) - This was recut after bad preview audience reaction and reduced to fit time constraints for a double feature from 132 minutes to 88 minutes. A director's cut is impossible as footage was destroyed. A 2002 television movie restored all of the original Orson Welles script.
  • The Big Sleep (1946) - Altered and partially reshot after preview screening to showcase Lauren Bacall. Both versions still exist and are available on DVD.
  • Mourning Becomes Electra - The 1947 film version of Eugene O'Neill's six-hour play was released at 175 minutes, and was then cut to 105 minutes by entirely eliminating the final sequence after flopping at the box office. It has since been restored to 156 minutes.
  • The Paradine Case (1947) - Hitchcock's rough cut ran close to 3 hours, but over the years, the studio trimmed the film into 131 minutes, then again to 94 minutes. It has restored the film to its present length of 114 minutes, and some of Hitchcock's scenes were also reshot. Some time in the 1980s, a flood destroyed Hitchcock's rough cut.
  • Macbeth (1948) - Cut from 107 minutes to 89 minutes for US release, removing key scenes and redubbing dialog to remove Scottish accents. The original 107 minute version was restored and re-released in the 1980s, and is now available on video and a Region 2 DVD. It has never been released as a Region 1 DVD.
  • Joan of Arc (1948) - Originally roadshown at 145 minutes, but after the Rossellini scandal involving Ingrid Bergman, who starred in the film, it did not do especially well at the box office, and was cut to 100 minutes for general release. The film was restored to its full length in 1998, and was released complete on DVD in 2004.


  • Treasure Island (1950) - This was re-released in 1975 with minor edits of violence to receive a "G" rating. Uncut version is available on DVD with a "PG" rating.
  • A Streetcar Named Desire (1951) - Approximately 3 minutes of suggestive scenes that director Kazan had filmed were removed because of demands by the Hays Code and groups like the Catholic Legion of Decency; Kazan fought to have the footage kept in the film but lost. In 1993, a director's cut restored version of the film was released in theatres and that version has been released on video and DVD.
  • Seven Samurai (1954) - Recut for length from 207 minutes to 160 minutes, 150 minutes, and 141 minutes in three different abridged versions. A 190 minute version was released in 1981, and the complete director's cut was re-released on DVD in 2002.
  • Senso (1954) - Recut by the Italian censors from Luchino Visconti's original 166 minute director's cut to 117 minutes and with an extra scene tacked on in the end to give the film a slightly more upbeat resolution. Various other scenes, minor and major, were trimmed or cut when the film was distributed internationally as Livia and The Wanton Contessa. The 117 minute version has been restored and released on video in some countries, but it is unknown whether a release of the complete 166 minute cut is possible.
  • Godzilla (or Gojira) (1954) - Recut and redubbed into English by Joseph E. Levine for U.S. release entitled Godzilla: King of the Monsters, replacing much footage with new material starring Raymond Burr. Both the original and reworked versions are now available on DVD.
  • A Star Is Born (1954) - Recut from 181 minutes to 150 minutes after premiere engagements. A 176 minute reconstruction was released in 1983, the closest possible to the original version. A director's cut is impossible as some footage has been lost (it exists in audio form); stills of some missing scenes had to be used.
  • Mr. Arkadin (1955) - Yet another film by Orson Welles that was recut by the studio, significantly changing the plot and structure of the film. The Criterion Collection released a comprehensive three-DVD set of the film in April 2006, featuring three versions: the "Corinth" version, "Confidential Report" (the European cut), and the newly edited "Comprehensive" version, but because the film was taken out of Welles' control in post-production, it is unknown exactly what he had in mind for the complex flashback structure he spoke of later in his life.
  • Touch of Evil (1958) - Previewed at 108 minutes, then recut to 95 minutes for release. Changes Welles requested be made to the preview version were realized and the film was released on DVD in 1998 with a running time of 111 minutes. All three cuts now available on DVD.
  • South Pacific (1958) - Recut from 171 minutes to 157 minutes three weeks after the premiere. Director's cut was discovered in a faded 70 mm print in England in 2005 and has since been restored and issued on DVD.
  • Ben-Hur (1959) - Recut considerably for theatrical re-issue to approx. 165 min, eliminating, among other scenes, the opening with the three wise men. Full 214 min. version available on home video.


  • Spartacus (1960) - Premiered at 184 minutes, re-released in 1967 at 161 minutes then finally restored in 1991, running at 198 minutes. The most notorious scene that has been reinserted is a bathing scene involving Laurence Olivier and Tony Curtis, as the dialogue was metaphorically suggestive of homosexuality. The rediscovered footage was absent of a soundtrack, so Curtis redubbed his own lines and Anthony Hopkins was used for Olivier's part, Olivier having died in 1989.
  • The Alamo (1960) - Cut from original 202-minute roadshow version to 167 minutes for general release; the original negative to the roadshow release is either missing or has been lost permanently. 70 mm print of the longer version was discovered in the 1990s and used for digital video transfer (the roadshow version continues to air on cable TV) before being mishandled by studio. Both versions continue to circulate on video although the general release version is the one available on DVD. Attempt is now being made to restore the full-length version.
  • Lawrence of Arabia (1962) - Originally 222 minutes, recut considerably twice for later theatrical and television releases due to time constraints; current restored version (overseen by director David Lean and re-edited by Robert A. Harris and James C. Katz) runs 216 minutes (including intermission).
  • Gypsy (1962) - After the initial engagements, the reprise of "You'll Never Get Away From Me" and the entirety of the song "Together Wherever We Go" were removed from the film and lost until the late 1990s, when a severely faded, and worn print that had the scenes was located, but they were not reinstated into the film.
  • It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963) - Cut from original release length of 192 minutes to 154 minutes for general release; approximate director's cut of 182 minutes (using some 70 mm footage discovered in a warehouse slated for demolition) released to video in the 1990s. Some footage still exists in some form, while other footage is presumed lost; attempt currently being made by Robert A. Harris to reconstruct the roadshow version.
  • Cleopatra (1963) - see main article for details.
  • Journey Back to Oz (1964/1972) - Expanded for network television from its original 88 to 96 minutes to include live-action scenes with Bill Cosby as the Wizard. Only the theatrical version is represented on DVD, but the Cosby segments are presented as a separate supplement on the disc.
  • Major Dundee (1965) - Recut to 123 minutes. Approximate director's cut (136 minutes) released in 2005. Director's cut is impossible as some footage is either lost or was never shot.
  • Follow Me, Boys! (1966) - Originally released at 133 minutes, but cut to 123 minutes for the 1976 re-issue. The DVD is the complete 133-minute version.
  • The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966) - Recut by United Artists from 176 minutes to 161 minutes for U.S. release; the full original Italian version was restored in 2003 and is available on DVD. Since no English soundtrack exists, Clint Eastwood and Eli Wallach (as well as other voice actors filling in for those who had since passed away) dubbed their dialogue for the additional scenes.
  • The Fearless Vampire Killers (1967) - Originally entitled Dance of the Vampires and recut from 107 minutes to ≈90 minutes for the US market and released under the new title, The Fearless Vampire Killers, or Pardon Me, But Your Teeth are in My Neck. Director's cut was released in 1995.
  • The Happiest Millionaire (1967) - Cut from preview length of 172 minutes to premiere length of 160 minutes, then to 144 minutes, then to 118 minutes. The complete 172 minute version was released on DVD in 1999.
  • Play Time (1967) - Released as a 70 mm film of 155 minutes, but despite widespread critical acclaim and the popularity of Jacques Tati, the film was a colossal failure in France, causing Tati's bankruptcy. It was first cut to 126 minutes, and then to 108 minutes and converted to 35 mm film for the 1973 US release, where it performed no better than it had in France. A 2002 restoration attempt which cost €800,000 managed to locate the 126 minute version and restore it; it is now available on DVD. The original cut of the film has not been found.
  • Star! (1968) - Cut from premiere length of 181 minutes to 150 minutes and again to 120 minutes under a new title, Those Were the Happy Times, without the approval of director Robert Wise. Director's cut was released on video in 1993 and on DVD subsequently.
  • Yellow Submarine (1968) - Revised for U.S. release with alternate animation to replace the "Hey, Bulldog!" sequence seen in European version. Restored in 1999 and released on DVD with remixed soundtrack and the "Hey, Bulldog!" scene reinserted.
  • Finian's Rainbow (1968) - The musical number "Necessity" was deleted prior to the film's release. It is included on the soundtrack recording.
  • The Wild Bunch (1969) - Recut for length from 145 minutes to 135 minutes for the American version; director's cut was released in 1995.
  • Goodbye, Mr. Chips (1969) - With much of the negative criticism aimed at the musical numbers, MGM decided to eliminate most of them when the film moved into neighborhood theaters following its initial reserved-seat run. Given the songs were used not only to advance the plot but to express the characters' thoughts and emotions as well, the edited version had huge gaps in the storyline. Everything was restored for the 1991 VHS release.


  • Città violenta (aka The Family & Violent City) (1970) - Eight minutes of explicit footage was edited by U.S. distributor United Artists for U.S release. The footage was restored for the DVD release.
  • Darling Lili (1970) - Originally released at 136 minutes (not counting seven minutes of overture and exit music); director Blake Edwards reportedly was unhappy with the production of the film. Two decades later, Edwards created a new cut for the TNT network, deleting 22 minutes of footage and changing the film's tone; this "director's cut" runs 114 minutes, and is the version available on DVD. Coincidentally, the full-length version has aired on TNT's sister network, Turner Classic Movies.
  • Bedknobs and Broomsticks (1971) - Cut before release from approximately 140 minutes to 117 minutes, and cut from that to 97 minutes when reissued in 1979. A "Special Edition" running 139 minutes was released in 1996; this is believed to be as close as possible to director's cut; the only song still missing is "A Step in the Right Direction", which was reconstructed with still photos to the audio and is available as a DVD supplement.
  • A New Leaf (1971) - Cut from three hours to 102 minutes by producer Robert Evans. Director's cut has not been released; it is unknown whether the missing footage still exists.
  • 1776 (1972) - Recut by producer Jack L. Warner from 181 minutes to 142 minutes for time. The 181 minute version was released on laserdisc in 1992, but director Peter H. Hunt considers the 169 minute DVD version to be the director's cut.
  • Lost Horizon (1973) - Slightly re-edited after premiere engagement; the complete version has been issued on LaserDisc.
  • The Wicker Man (1973) - Around 20 minutes of footage was cut from the film by the director and editor before its original release at 99 minutes. British Lion had the film re-cut, with the order of some scenes changed, to 87 minutes for its American release. A semi-restored 95 minute version was released in the U.S. in 1979, and a further restored version at 99 minutes was prepared for the DVD release.
  • The Exorcist (1973) - Recut for length to 121 minutes; director William Friedkin considers the theatrical release his director's cut, but he recut the film (known as the "Version You've Never Seen") as a writer's cut/favor to good friend William Peter Blatty. The new cut was released in 2000, and runs 134 minutes.
  • American Graffiti (1973) - Originally released at 110 minutes; three minutes of footage featuring then-up-and-coming stars was restored for 1979 reissue.
  • Two Minute Warning (1976) - Re-edited and substantially altered for network television by Universal Pictures to replace violent footage with new subplot to supplement existing one. 45 minutes of footage was specifically shot for television added with new cast; as a result, TV version was disowned by original director Larry Pierce, and "Gene Palmer" credited as director of TV version, which has never been released to video.
  • New York, New York (1976) - Originally released at 153 minutes, then cut for reissue at 136 minutes. Extended 163 minute version (with some deleted footage and "Happy Endings" number restored) available on video and DVD.
  • Pete's Dragon (1977) - Cut after Los Angeles premiere from 134 minutes to 121 minutes for the New York premiere and general release, then to 105 minutes for the 1984 reissue. The current version seen on video and DVD is 128 minutes. The soundtrack album has additional verses to the songs "I Saw a Dragon" and "Passamashloddy," and the film as it is seen today has a jarring edit 40 minutes into the film in the scene where Lampie finds Pete sleeping in the lighthouse.
  • Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977) - A 1982 network version (combining all known footage available at the time from the original version and special edition) runs 143 minutes. The three major theatrical versions (the original 1977 cut of 135 minutes, the 1980 "Special Edition" of 132 minutes, and the 1998 "Collector's Edition" of 137 minutes) are now available on DVD.
  • Saturday Night Fever (1977) - Re-edited for 1979 reissue as a 108 minute PG-rated version to broaden its young audience. Similar network television version adds back outtakes deleted from original release. Original uncut R-rated version is available on video and DVD.
  • Dawn of the Dead (1978) - The alleged "director's cut", which George A. Romero dislikes, runs 139 minutes and features more violence and some expository scenes. The theatrical version runs 126 minutes, but was cut in the UK to 120 minutes for an 18 rating; this version was released on video in the UK in the early 1990s.
  • The Kids Are Alright (1979) - Portions of the documentary film on English rock band The Who, including the bulk of the nearly-ten-minute song "A Quick One, While He's Away," were excised from later prints of the film, and several other songs sped up in order to fit the newly edited film into a standard 90-minute running time. This was the only version of the film available for home viewing until a 2003 special edition DVD restored the film to its original edit.
  • Caligula (1979) - Recut by Penthouse when Bob Guccione found himself unhappy with the film's tone, political context and the unsensuality of the sex scenes. Many scenes were deleted, others re-arranged and altered into completely different context through recutting, trimming and the use of discarded raw footage. Approximately six minutes of scenes were reshot personally by Bob Guccione to make the film's sensuality more "appealing." The original intended director's cut may be impossible since it is unknown what happened to all the raw footage. A vague approximation of a "director's cut," edited from a recently discovered pre-release version (though without the involvement of Tinto Brass, the director) was released on DVD on October 2, 2007. However, much of the film is still butchered because 50 hours of footage turned out to be missing from the Penthouse vaults and since Tinto Brass was not involved, many of the wrong editing choices have been left in by mistake.
  • Alien (1979) - After some substantial film re-editing and alteration of Jerry Goldsmith's score, the theatrical cut was released at 117 minutes. A so-called "director's cut", in fact a studio re-cut created as a marketing ploy, as director Ridley Scott still considers the theatrical cut to be his director's cut, was issued theatrically in 2003 at 116 minutes.
  • 1941 (1979) - Re-edited by Columbia Pictures after 150 minute preview screening due to both time and the two studios involved (Universal Pictures co-produced this with Columbia). Theatrical cut ran 120 minutes; original preview version (with subtle changes) has been seen on both network and pay-cable television and is now available on DVD running at 146 minutes.


  • The Blues Brothers (1980) - Cut from 180 minutes Roadshow style Director's Cut to 148 minutes for test screening, then to 133 minutes for theatrical release. All edits made by director John Landis under pressure from theater owners and Universal. 'Roadshow' version was thrown out by Universal in 1985, and is presumed lost. The 148 min. version released to DVD on 1998 is the longest version that currently exists.
  • Heaven's Gate (1980) - Recut for length, from 325 minutes to 219 minutes, then to 139 minutes. The 219 minute version was released in the mid 1980s and is the one on video/DVD.
  • Cruising (1980) - Cut from 140 minutes to 106 minutes to remove explicit sex and violence. Director's cut has never been released.
  • The Plague Dogs (1981) - Cut down for length from 103 minutes to 82 minutes; some trims were made for content, such as removing a shot of a man's mutilated carcass. 103 minute version is available on DVD.
  • Inchon (1982) - Cut from 140 minutes to 105 minutes after being booed off the screen at the premiere.
  • Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982) - Several scenes supplanting sub-plot cut by Paramount prior to release, restored for network television years later. This same version, called "The Director's Edition", has been released on DVD.
  • E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982) - Re-cut and revised in 2002 for a 20th Anniversary re-issue with two brief deleted scenes re-inserted, while re-tooling several special effects scenes, especially in the climactic sequences where guns were replaced by walkie-talkies. Both the original and revised versions have been issued on DVD.
  • Blade Runner (1982) - Recut with new ending, simplification and sound mixing (voice-overs); U.S. release ran for 117 minutes, the "international cut" was two minutes longer, featuring some graphic violence not seen in the aforementioned U.S. release. Director's cut released in 1992 was done by the studio with notes from Ridley Scott. An authoritative "Final Cut" was released in 2007, with continuity errors corrected and special effects slightly improved. All these versions, along with the original work print, are available on DVD.
  • Smokey and the Bandit Part 3 (1983) - Shot as Smokey Is The Bandit with Jackie Gleason in a dual role as Sheriff Buford T. Justice and the bandit. It was heavily reshot and rewritten with Jerry Reed as Cletus (from the first 2 films) when test audiences couldn't follow the original story.
  • The Keep (1983)- Recut by Paramount Pictures from the original 3½ hour length down to 97 minutes. Both director Michael Mann and the author of the novel the film was based on, F. Paul Wilson, disowned this version and the film bombed at the box office. The director's cut is currently unavailable and has possibly been lost.
  • Once Upon a Time in America (1984) - Recut for length and simplification from 229 minutes to 139 minutes for the American version as The Ladd Company was also going through financial issues at this time and did not find a four-hour film economically feasible. A result of the cutting is that many characters disappear, people refer to events that never took place, but more centrally the film changes from a series of almost impressionistic flashbacks to a straightforward linear and prosaic narrative. A 265 minute version was announced for Italian TV shortly after its theatrical release, but has yet to be aired. The director's cut was released in the late 1990s.
  • Supergirl (1984) - Recut for length from 124 minutes to 105 minutes for U.S. release. The out-of-print Anchor Bay Entertainment DVD contained two versions: the 124 minute edition and a never-seen 138 minute "director's cut" prepared prior to original UK release.
  • Dune (1984) - Re-edited in 1988 from 137 minutes theatrical cut to a 190 minutes television cut with additional and altered footage; extended by Universal without the authority of director David Lynch. Re-edited again for television in the San Francisco Bay Area in 1992 to 180 minutes (combining footage from the two previous versions), and re-edited yet again in 2006 for a special DVD release (all 3 versions credited to screenwriter "Judas Booth" and director "Allen Smithee", both David Lynch aliases).
  • Swing Shift (1984) - Recut and partially re-shot at the request of star Goldie Hawn in order to enhance her role. Both cuts run 100 minutes; Jonathan Demme's director's cut only exists on bootleg VHS.
  • Legend (1985) - Recut from a 150 minute workprint version to a 125 minute answer print, before being cut to 113 minutes for test previews. After poor audience feedback, was cut by director Ridley Scott to 94 minutes for international release; later recut by Scott at the behest of Universal studio head Sid Sheinberg for US release to 89 minutes with Jerry Goldsmith's score replaced with a new pop-oriented score by Tangerine Dream, Bryan Ferry, and Jon Anderson in order to attract a younger audience. The 113 minute preview cut was found in late 1999 and released on DVD in 2002 as the "director's cut", with Goldsmith's score returned to the film.
  • Brazil (1985) - Recut from original European 142 minute length at the behest of Universal studio head Sid Sheinberg to a 96 minute "Love Conquers All" version which wasn't released theatrically but seen on syndicated television. Sheinberg also insisted director Terry Gilliam cut the film to 131 minutes for the US release. The full European version was subsequently released for limited theatrical reissue, and all three versions have been released to video. Gilliam ultimately prepared a "director's final cut" for The Criterion Collection's laserdisc release; this cut has been used for all subsequent DVD releases.
  • The Black Cauldron (1985) - Two minutes of finished animation were cut from the film by then-animation-chairman of Disney Jeffrey Katzenberg to tone down the violence. The film had already been scored, and the edits made created a disruption in the musical score.
  • The Land Before Time (1988) - 10 minutes of footage was cut from the film against the director's wishes, as it was believed that the edited scenes would be too frightening or even psychologically damaging to children. Cut scenes included extended segments of the Tyrannosaurus fight.[citation needed] According to director Don Bluth, the cut footage has since been destroyed. It is rumored that there was an additional alternate ending in which the main characters died and the Great Valley symbolized Heaven. This has been denied by the film makers.
  • A Night in the Life of Jimmy Reardon (1988) - recut and retitled by distributors Island Pictures and Twentieth Century Fox so it could be promoted easier to teen audiences and fans of star River Phoenix. The director's cut, entitled Aren't You Even Gonna Kiss Me Goodbye, has been screened at film festivals and is noticeably more adult-oriented and harder in content than the theatrical version.
  • Licence to Kill (1989) - Violence was cut by studio to avoid an R rating in the U.S. and an 18 rating in the UK. The uncut version of the film was released on DVD in 2006 with a PG-13 in the U.S. and 15 in the UK.
  • The Abyss (1989) - Recut from nearly three hours to a more manageable 140 min. for theatrical issue, in part due to lack of special effects technology at the time to complete certain scenes. The 172 min. "Special Edition", overseen by director James Cameron in 1993 (by which time special effects technology had advanced enough for said scenes to be completed), is now available on DVD in addition to the theatrical version.


  • The Exorcist III (1990) - Studio ordered an exorcism for the climax, to replace Blatty's original downbeat ending. This required the creation of additional scenes early on in the film to introduce and develop a new character (the exorcist) named Father Morning. Jason Miller was hired to "double" Brad Dourif's scenes. Trailers and behind-the-scenes footage reveal that there was a special effects shot involving a priest holding his own severed head at some point; this was probably cut before the premiere.
  • Nightbreed (1990) - Recut from Clive Barker's 126 minute version to 101 minutes by 20th Century Fox for pacing reasons and to get a R rating. Barker has been preparing a director's cut for the last several years that contains his original cut.
  • Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (1992) - Recut from a 300 minute assembly cut. David Lynch's intended cut ran 3 hours 40 minutes but was recut to 134 minutes for commercial reasons by the request of New Line Cinema. As much of the footage as can be found will appear on a special edition DVD in the near future. It is unknown if a director's cut will be released.
  • Army of Darkness (1993) - Recut from 96 minutes to 81 minutes by the studio, as well as the creation of newer more heroic ending. The 96 minute version is included alongside the theatrical version on Anchor Bay's DVD set.
  • Alien 3 (1993) - Completely recut (for time & content) by Fox after director David Fincher vetoed all control of the film after constant interference from the studio with unending requests for cuts and reshoots. An approximate "Assembly Cut" (made with David Fincher's blessing, but without his involvement) has been released on DVD, which is supposedly closer to Fincher's intended vision.
  • The Thief and the Cobbler (1993) - this animated film was a "reason for living" for director Richard Williams since 1964. In 1991, after showing executives the 91 minute workprint, Williams was fired and another director was brought in to finish the film as quickly and cheaply as possible. The film was heavily re-edited (~30 minutes of footage were taken out), songs were added and several characters were given new voices, including some that were originally meant to be mute. It was released in Australia and South Africa in 1993 (77 minutes) as The Princess and the Cobbler and in the U.S. in 1995 (72 minutes) under the name Arabian Knight; it was marketed as a ripoff of Disney's Aladdin.[citation needed] The film has not been officially restored (a November 2006 DVD release was of the cut U.S. version), though fan-made restorations have been made, cobbled together from different sources including the original workprint.
  • Being Human (1993) - after a disappointing test audience reaction, Warner Bros. forced Bill Forsyth to edit 40 minutes from his original cut, along with changing the ending and adding narration to the film. The film bombed as a result and Forsyth disowned the film.
  • Hard Target (1993) - an action film starring Jean-Claude Van Damme and directed by John Woo, the movie was recut by Woo and submitted to the MPAA several times, but all managed to receive an NC-17 rating due to its punishing, sadistic violence throughout. Universal Studios decided to take the film and edit it themselves for an American-friendly version, resulting in more than 20 minutes of footage being cut.
  • Wild Side (1995) - Re-cut from 111 to 96 minutes and rearranged in chronological order. Director Donald Cammell committed suicide on the day of the film's video premiere in 1996; Director's cut was reassembled by editor Frank Mazzola in 2000 and released on DVD in the United Kingdom only.
  • Waterworld (1995) - Re-cut considerably by Universal Pictures and star Kevin Costner against the will of director Kevin Reynolds, leaving out key scenes that enhanced subplot. A network television version by ABC restores 40 minutes of this footage. An extended version of 176 minutes was released on DVD [1]. This restores the 40 minutes of footage, but is the version restored by ABC, having cuts of profanity and violence.
  • Batman Forever (1995) - Up to 30 minutes of footage removed from final cut as the request of Warner Bros. to make the film more family-friendly following the backlash from Tim Burton's Batman Returns. According to screenwriter Akiva Goldsman, a subplot involving Bruce Wayne's discovery of his father's diary and subsequent guilt over his parents' death was significantly truncated. The original footage would have explained Bruce's comments following the death of the Flying Graysons ("I killed them"), as well as the title "Batman Forever." The original opening scene involving the escape of Two-Face from Arkham Asylum (including the words "The Bat Must Die" written in what appears to be blood) was also removed, deemed too dark for a family film. Due to this removal, the first half of the film had to be rearranged.
  • Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995) - Recut by studio prior to release by truncating, altering, or replacing many scenes (especially the ending) that helped to explain the subplot; bootleg videos/DVDs of this original "Producer's Cut" have circulated among fans. According to writer Daniel Ferrands, the Producer's Cut might get a DVD release in the near future.
  • Angus (1996) - Massively recut after test audiences found the idea of both of Angus' parents being gay uncomfortable. In the recut, Angus' father is now dead, and his mother, Meg (Kathy Bates), is presented as an asexual character. Hints to the original cut remain, such as Bates' character being an interstate trucker with the CB handle "Bruiser", and scenes where Angus' grandfather (George C. Scott) makes allusions to Meg being "different". Other segments which were cut simply for pacing reasons often appear in TV versions of the film.
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie (1996) - Distributor Gramercy Pictures forced many changes to the film to make it accessible to casual viewers as well as cutting down the film from its original 95 minute length to 73 minutes. Some of the deleted scenes have been shown at the 1996 MST3K convention as well as included on the fan produced Special Edition and 10th Anniversary Edition DVDs. Director/Producer Jim Mallon says the original prints were destroyed by the studio.
  • The Crow: City of Angels (1996) - Director Tim Pope's intended theatrical version was forced to be recut from 120 minutes to 84 minutes by Miramax late in post-production. A number of subplots were deleted, scenes were re-shot and the scene order was shuffled by Miramax, giving the movie a disjointed feel and tone. The Miramax theatrical cut was released as a carbon copy of the original movie, The Crow. The Ashe/Sarah love story sub-plot was deleted, along with the original "dark" ending. The Full director's cut is said to be approximately 160 minutes. Released "director's cut" is a false claim on Miramax's part and is not a real director's cut. Tim Pope has not been allowed to release his version.
  • Hellraiser: Bloodline (1996) - Director Kevin Yagher's original cut was deemed to be too slow and lacking in gore, leading to the studio hiring Joe Chappelle to direct new scenes and to re-structure the film into a number of extended flashbacks (the film was previously intended to be in chronological order). Yagher took his name off the final product, and as Chappelle had not directed enough footage to claim the director's credit, the film went out under the "Alan Smithee" pseudonym.
  • The Thin Red Line (1998) - In late 1998 or 1999, two time Academy Award-winning cinematographer John Toll claimed on The Charlie Rose Show that because director Terrence Malick was being irresolute and languid in the protracted editing process of The Thin Red Line with the editors on duty (even screen actor Sean Penn helped with minor editing)—the film was shot with over a million feet of film—Toll and the editors felt forced to confiscate the workprint from Mr. Malick to complete and finalize the version in time for the set-in-stone limited market theatrical release the week of Christmas 1998. It is rumored Malick's preliminary cut ran nearly six hours long -- approximately 5 1/2 hours running time. Among the actors whose scenes were excised are Lukas Haas, Bill Pullman, Jason Patric, Viggo Mortensen, Billy Bob Thornton (voiceover narration), Mickey Rourke and Martin Sheen. In the shooting screenplay, the part of Cpl. Fife (Adrien Brody) was one of the meatiest, although he barely speaks a line in the finished film.
  • The 13th Warrior (1999) - The original version, known as Eaters of the Dead and directed by John McTiernan was originally 127 minutes and slated to be released in May 1998. But when the film failed test screenings Michael Crichton took over the project and re-shot and added new material to the film. He was also involved with the reediting of the film as well and rejected composer Graeme Revell's hour long score. This version of the film has not been seen publicly.
  • Payback (1999) - Although credited as director, Brian Helgeland's cut of the film isn't the final version released to audiences. After the end of principal photography, Helgeland's version was deemed too dark for the mainstream public. Following a script rewrite by Terry Hayes, director Helgeland was replaced by the uncredited Paul Abascal. Helgeland's version, Straight Up: The Director's Cut, was released April 10, 2007.


  • Malèna (2000) - Released uncut internationally but was heavily edited in the US by Miramax Films to avoid controversy from its May-December romance plotline. The uncut version still is not yet available in the US.
  • Tears of the Black Tiger (2000) - For international sales, director Wisit Sasanatieng offered a faster-paced, 101 minute version of his 110 minute Thai western. However, US distribution rights were purchased by Miramax Films, which made further cuts and changed the ending. A Singaporean DVD release cut scenes involving violence and gore. In 2006, the film's US rights were picked up by Magnolia Pictures, which released the original 110 minute version of the film in a limited theatrical run in 2007 before releasing it on DVD. Previously, only a Thai-released DVD contained the original cut of the film.[2][3][4][5][6]
  • Bright Future (2003) - Director Kiyoshi Kurosawa's original cut ran 115 minutes, but he re-cut it down to 92 minutes at the request of the international sales agent.[7] The original cut is available on DVD in Japan and South Korea.
  • The Medallion (2003) - Original title was Highbinders. Renamed and re-cut by Columbia Tristar from its original 116 minute version to a condensed 88 minute release.[8] Dialogue was also changed and some Cantonese-speaking moments were redubbed. Director Gordon Chan and Jackie Chan were against this and proposed that two versions be released, but the studio refused.
  • The Stepford Wives (2004) - Re-cut by Frank Oz and Paramount from 115 minutes to 93 after the test screening audiences hated the film's dark tone and the revelation that the husbands actually killed their wives. Some minor scenes were hastily shot and cut into the film to fill in the gaps, but it didn't save the film from huge plot holes and contradictions during the ending revelation.
  • Æon Flux (2005) - Re-cut by Paramount Pictures[9] from 122 minutes to 92 minutes against the wishes of the director, Karyn Kusama. Whether or not the release of a Director's Cut is possible, is currently unknown.
  • Cursed (2005) - The film was originally shot as an R but midway through production, the Weinsteins ordered director Wes Craven to make it a PG-13. Unable to do such with what he had shot, Craven had to stop production and major script revisions occurred and much of the film was re-shot.
  • The New World (2005) - Originally released at its roadshow length of 150 minutes from an even longer version of the film; director Terrence Malick later decided to edit the film further for wide release to 135 minutes. An extended 172-minute version, closer to Malick's original intended cut, is available on DVD.
  • Ultraviolet (2006) - Re-cut by Screen Gems[10] from 120 to 88 minutes against the wishes of the director, Kurt Wimmer. An extended cut with a running time of 94 minutes is available on DVD.
  • Poseidon (2006) - Re-cut by Warner Brothers from 125 minutes to 105, and again to 98 minutes after a disastrous test screening.
  • Arthur and the Minimoys (2007) - Re-cut by The Weinstein Company for the release in the US market and released as Arthur and the Invisibles. The film included a love story between the ten year old Arthur and Princess Selenia, a fairy princess more or less his age but looking older; due to the fact that Madonna voiced the role of Selenia, there was concern in America about the age difference between the two actors who voiced the roles, so the love storyline was cut, leaving a gap in the plot. The film was a flop in the US market, and director Besson blamed the Weinsteins. The international release and the international DVD have the original version.
  • The Invasion (2007) - The film had minimal visual effects, with no need for green screen work. Instead, the director shot from odd camera angles and claustrophobic spaces to increase tension in the film.[10] In October 2006, The Visiting changed to the title of The Invasion, due to the cancellation of ABC's TV series of a similar name.[11] The studio, however, was unhappy with Hirschbiegel's results and hired the Wachowski brothers to rewrite the film and assist with additional shooting.[1] The studio later hired director James McTeigue to perform re-shoots that would cost $10 million,[12] an uncredited duty by McTeigue.[13] After 13 months of inactivity, re-shoots took place in January 2007 to increase action scenes and add a twist ending.[14] The re-shoot lasted for 17 days in Los Angeles.
  • Hitman (2007) - Director Xavier Gens was removed from his position as Director and denied the right to the final cut after Fox were not happy with his 'hard R' cut of the movie. Release of the movie was delayed by Fox in order to re-shoot and re-cut the movie into a PG-13 esque family-friendly film. [11] [12]
  • The Golden Compass (2007) - Re-edited shortly before theatrical release to remove the film's ending, which test audiences reportedly had difficulty understanding in context of the film. Director Chris Weitz also stated that there had been tremendous marketing pressure for a more upbeat ending. The ending was removed with the intention of using it as the opening to the film's potential sequel, The Subtle Knife. As a result of this deletion, the film's second half was re-organized by having two major events switched in order, to give the film a more dramatic climax in lieu of the original ending. The change was so last minute, however, that most of the film's tie-in material (video game, books and trailers) included footage and stills from the original order of events, as well as the unused ending. The opening sequence was also modified by adding a montage of the film's plot points accompanied by narration by Eva Green (in character as Serafina Pekkala), to more directly explain the film's complex plot.
  • Mr. Woodcock (2007) - originally a much darker comedy, the film suffered from poor test screenings that led to the firing of director Craig Gillespie and extensive reshoots that led to the film being delayed over a year. The director of the reshoots chose not to be credited, leaving Gillespie to take credit as director. The final film opened in September 2007 and flopped with critics and audiences.
  • Babylon A.D. (2008) - At the time of the movie's release, director Mathieu Kassovitz openly opposed this movie, calling it a "bad episode of 24". In the interview with[13], Mathieu Kassovitz said that 20th Century Fox interfered throughout this movie's production, which led him not to have a chance to shoot one scene the way it was written in the script or the way he wanted it to be. The studio cut 15 minutes of Mathieu Kassovitz's original version to get to a running time of 93 minutes against his wishes. As a result of the feud between Mathieu Kassovitz and Fox studios over the final version, the movie almost didn't get any promotion at all.
  • Brüno (2009) - Because the MPAA gave this an NC-17 for extreme sexual content, the studio, Universal Studios cut down every single thing to release an R-rating instead of an NC-17. It's unknown if some of the scenes from the NC-17 rated version might be released in the unrated version on DVD.[14]

References Edit

  1. [ Waterworld R1 Extended Version in November
  2. "Miramax Grabs Sasanatieng's 'Tears of the Black Tiger'". IndieWire. Retrieved 2006-12-16. 
  3. "TIFF Report: Wisit Sasanatieng talks Citizen Dog'". Twitchfilm. 2005-09-17. Retrieved 2007-01-11. 
  4. "Tears of the Black Tiger". DVD comparisons. DVD Talk. 2005-02-23. Retrieved 2007-01-11. 
  5. "The Tiger hits DVD April 24th". 2007-02-16. Retrieved 2007-02-17. 
  6. Goldstein, Greg (2006-11-28). "Magnolia cages 'Tiger' in U.S.". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2007-01-09. 
  7. Mes, Tom (2003-08-20). "Midnight Eye interview: Kiyoshi Kurosawa". Midnight Eye. Retrieved 2007-03-29. 
  11. Twitch - Fox Yanks Hitman from Director Xavier Gens
  12. Twitch - FOX Responds On HITMAN
  13. Clayton Nueman (2008-08-25). "Masters of Scifi - Babylon A.D. Director Mathieu Kassovitz Describes a Disastrous Production". /Film. Retrieved 2008-11-12. 
  14. "MPAA gives 'Bruno' NC-17 rating". Variety. Variety. 2009-04-15. Retrieved 2009-04-15. 

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