The Snyder Cut is out now, so here are five more movies we'd like to see get a second chance
#ReleaseTheSnyderCut succeeded, so here are five more hashtags you might see start to trend before too long.
Four years since the initial cut of the movie hit cinemas, and following a swell of support online, which mostly involved the hashtag #ReleaseTheSnyderCut, it has been made a reality.
Yep, this week saw the arrival of Zack Snyder's Justice League, a (for better and for worse) four-hour edit of the superhero epic.
This is far from the first time that a movie has been given a second chance by a studio for its director to improve upon what came before - Richard Donner for Superman II, Ridley Scott for Blade Runner AND Kingdom of Heaven, Paul Schrader for The Exorcist: Dominion - but there are still plenty of other projects out there, languishing just a few edit sessions away from being vastly better than what has come before.
So here are five more director's cuts we'd like to see, now that Snyder and his fanbase have achieved what many believed to be the near-impossible:
The movie: Suicide Squad
The backstory: While the finished movie was a massive financial hit ($746.8 million at the worldwide box office), it was also absolutely savaged by critics (26% on Rotten Tomatoes). Writer/director David Ayer - whose previous works include End Of Watch and Fury - was reportedly told to do massive reshoots in order to "lighten the mood", after Batman v Superman proved to be too sombre for viewers. Additionally, there were a massive number of editors apparently cutting multiple different versions of the movie simultaneously, giving the producers options for a final product. The one that eventually landed in cinemas had A LOT cut out of it, including nearly all of Jared Leto's scenes as Joker.
As recently as January, Leto was in full support of Ayer getting another go to release his vision of Suicide Squad, telling Variety the following:
"I would love for [Ayer] to be able to work on that and make the film of his dreams. It's always hard when you make these movies because it's such a pressure cooker. There are so many decisions that have to be made in a short amount of time. My hat's off to the directors and the producers, and the studios. It's not easy. You never start with something that's perfect. It's a race to try to make it as good as you can in a short amount of time. So I get it, having another swing at things? I'm sure we all can use that."
The movie: Alien 3
The backstory: David Fincher is one of today's most respected directors, but for his very first outing on a feature length project, he stepped into the boots previously filled by Ridley Scott and James Cameron. The threequel was already in trouble before he even stepped foot on set, with a revolving door of writers and directors on the project before him, while filming began without a finished script being in place.
Fincher's version was presented, and reportedly, the folks at 20th Century Fox truly hated it, and went about gutting it with edits. Years later, a version titled the Assembly Cut was released on the Alien Quadrilogy box-set, which re-instated over 30 minutes of previously unseen footage, and resulted in a much better response from viewers, building up its own cult following over the years. At the time of the Quadrilogy release, Fincher was the only director not to involve himself in recording commentaries or behind-the-scenes footage. The Assembly Cut is perhaps the closest we'll ever see to Fincher's actual final vision, but who knows what else was lost in this battle between director and distribution company.
The movie: Fantastic Four
The backstory: Hot off the success of his found-footage superhero movie Chronicle, director and co-writer Josh Trank seemed like the young, talented director to help bring the squeaky-clean Fantastic Four in a new, interesting direction. Early on in production, he said influences on his version of the story would include body horror icon David Cronenberg.
Then Trank presented his cut, and the studio was reportedly completely caught off-guard by how dark he had gone. Trank went back to the editing room, but editor Stephen E. Rankin was ordered to produce a cut too, and the studio ultimately went with Rankin's version. Trank would later claim that Rankin was put in place as the new "de facto director", and that his version of the movie was much better than the critically and commercially panned movie that was released in cinemas.
Although one of the movie's stars, Kate Mara (aka The Invisible Woman), also revealed that Trank's set was far from perfect, telling Collider: "I think that the thing that I always go back to on that one is that I think I should have followed my instincts more. Like when my gut was telling me, ‘You probably shouldn’t let that slide, what that person just said,’ or if you’re feeling a certain way about what an energy is like and how that is affecting your performance."
The movie: Event Horizon
The backstory: When this movie arrived in cinemas, it was 96 minutes long. The version that director Paul W. S. Anderson provided to Paramount Pictures was 130 minutes long. The film wasn't a massive hit in cinemas ($60 million on a $42 million budget), but it did become an immediate smash when it became available on DVD, so Anderson went about assembling a Director's Cut.
The original cut was apparently INCREDIBLY violent and gory, a lot of which was chopped out of the final version, including a longer look at the "blood orgy" that the ship's previous crew took part in. However, when time came to re-edit the movie, Anderson discovered that the movie had been stored improperly in a vault in Transylvania (yes, seriously), and had simply become too damaged to be recovered.
The movie's producer Lloyd Levin is said to possess a VHS copy of Anderson's original edit, but neither Levin nor Anderson have actually rewatched it since 1997.
The movie: Cursed
The backstory: Never heard of Cursed? That is okay, it was a terrible werewolf movie starring Christina Ricci and Jesse Eisenberg, directed by the late, great horror maestro Wes Craven, reuniting him with the writer of Scream. However, about 70% of the way into production, the Weinstein brothers decided they didn't like what they were seeing, and told them to effectively start over. The delays in the production meant one of the lead actors (Skeet Ulrich, remember him?) could no longer be involved in the movie.
The Weinsteins also ditched legendary make-up artist Rick Baker's work (he won the first ever Best Makeup Oscar for his work on An American Werewolf in London), replacing it all with bad CGI, and had the rating slashed so teenagers could go see it in the cinema. It all resulted in one of Craven's worst movies, but Bloody Disgusting reports that Craven's initial cut still exists, with a colleague of Craven suggesting it should be released in his honour.
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