Re Cut

aka: Directors Cut
Ah yes, the snake. One of the legendary bad effects of Doctor Who - one so bad that they redid it in CGI for the DVD. Surely by 2011, when the DVD came out, we can simply be at peace with the fact that Doctor Who had some crap effects in its time. I mean, letís CGI out Matthew Waterhouse while we’re at it.
TARDIS Eruditorium, "Kinda"

Occasionally, a movie turns out good. Often, a movie turns out bad. Sometimes, a movie turns out good, but not quite good enough. That's where the concept of a Recut comes in.

Kinds of Recuts:
  • Director's Cut: The cut of the film the director 'approves of'. If the director didn't like the theatrical cut because they weren't allowed to cut the film the way they wanted, they may put scenes back in, take scenes out, fiddle with timing, change audio or various other things. This kind of Director's Cut is very common on DVD. Occasionally, the theatrical cut is the director's cut, because the director's perfectly happy with the theatrical cut.
  • Extended Cut: What ended up on the cutting room floor is put back in, without any significant removals. This is different from the director's original vision, as said vision may have excluded scenes mandated by the Producers, and vice-versa.
  • TV Cut: A version of the film edited for the different format. Basically, every movie shown on TV has been changed slightly (every time there's an ad break, the film fades to black) but often there are more significant changes. For instance, violence is often cut, swear words are either bleeped, silenced out, or their scenes altered, and nudity may be removed. (See any Die Hard movie.) They may also be edited for time. Before HD television they were also converted to pan-and-scan format from letterbox if such a version didn't exist.
  • George Lucas Altered Version: Instead of working with footage made during the original production the filmmaker creates new footage/audio/FX to be spliced in long after the original release. This changes it from an "original vision" into more of a completely new product based on the original.

Beyond that, things can get very confusing. The inclusion of one or more Recuts is often one of the selling points of a Limited Special Collector's Ultimate Edition. The Videogame equivalent is an Updated Re-release.


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  • When Marvel Comics reprinted the original series of ElfQuest new pages had to be added by Wendy Pini to fit the total page count. Some of these were new episode titles and recaps, while others were new or expanded story pages. Most of the latter were included in subsequent reprints; due to Art Evolution it's usually not too hard to tell which. A few of the new episode titles were also included, causing some disruption to the original chaptering. Controversially, the series was also re-lettered with bigger balloons which obscured more of the original art and removed some special formatting. This was not corrected until the art was finally "remastered" with computer lettering and coloring, which is the version currently available on the official website. Another reformatting took place when DC Comics reprinted the series in Manga-style volumes, requiring Pini to expand, contract or extend existing comic panels to fit the new page size. This version also included most of the additional art drawn for the Marvel version.
  • Anniversary trade paperbacks of famous series (ex. Watchmen, Dark Knight Returns, etc.) will on occasion have extra content in them, or edits to the story itself. For example, Batman: The Long Halloween, included a scene that was cut from the original story due to page constraints. The Killing Joke was recolored, making the scenes darker and more muted, in contrast to its original, more garish colors.
  • Several later works by Los Bros Hernandez have been published initially in the serial issues of Love And Rockets and later as stand-alone graphic novels, sometimes in significantly altered form.
  • Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog had issue 50 redone as a Super Sonic Special entitled "Sonic 50: Director's Cut". This was essentially what issue 50 was supposed to have been if they weren't forced to trim down the page count. It's also noticeable as it is considered canon and the original issue 50 is now a Missing Episode.
  • The collected edition of Kingdom Come came with an extra scene on Apokolips and an epilogue.
  • Cavewoman: Reloaded is a revised and expanded version of the original Cavewoman mini-series.

  • Supernova had an R-rated version released on video that was more violent and made the bad guy even worse. These scenes can be viewed on the DVD in the Deleted Scene section.
  • There was a special showing of the The Godfather films on TV some years ago. Called The Godfather Saga, it clocked in at over twelve hours and showed the events in the first two films in chronological order, adding scenes that were cut from the original theatrical releases. Another cut was created for home video with scenes from The Godfather Part III added. Both versions are not available on DVD or Blu-Ray, but the additional footage are included in the DVD Deleted Scene section.
  • The horror film Needful Things was shown on TBS some years back with a sizeable chunk of added footage, most adding depth to the characters. This version has yet to be released in any format.
  • The Dune movie. The 1984 theatrical version was not director David Lynch's Director's Cut—the producers not only made him cut a lot of material from his script, they also cut a lot of scenes that had been shot out as well—but it's the only one he's very happy with. Then in 1988, an Extended Cut was made to be shown on TV. It used deleted scenes, but reused more footage than Battlestar Galactica. David Lynch hated it, demanding his name be removed from the writer and director credit (this version has since been referred to as "The Alan Smithee Cut"). Then, in 1992, a San Francisco TV station made a mix of a cut between the original theatrical version of the movie and the Alan Smithee cut, which kept the new scenes but also put the violence back in. Finally, a cut known as the Extended Edition came out on DVD, which was a 177-minute edit of the Alan Smithee version. David Lynch is now a bitter arthouse director. Go figure.
  • Universal also did this for the Kevin Costner sci fi Waterworld. The Extended Cut originally appeared on ABC television in two parts that clocked in at two hours each (with commercials). It trimmed out the opening pee shot, the excess violence, and replaced most cusswords with "Slime!". It also reshuffled some of the order of events and added a ton of development of both world and characters, mostly for the Deacon and the atollers.
  • While we're on Kevin Costner, this also happened to Dances with Wolves. An Extended Cut was shown in Europe that adds practically an hour to the running time. While the focus on John Dunbar is lost, all the characters get a buttload of development. Also, the precise reason why the Army camp was deserted was explained. This has been released on DVD, and is the only way to get a widescreen version of the film without eBay.
  • Another Costner film that got this treatment was Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. Not much is added, but the connection between the Sheriff and the old crone is explained, and it is gross. This has also been released on DVD and the Netflix streaming service.
  • Made infamous by George Lucas reworking the original Star Wars trilogy, resulting in the "Han Shot First" campaign. He also did this to THX 1138. His Director's Cut is the only version available on DVD.
  • Peter Jackson has done this often.
    • He considers the theatrical Lord of the Rings movies to be his director's cuts, but the Extended Editions were created (by him) to restore deleted scenes to the movie and develop Tolkien's world more on screen.
    • In The Frighteners, he removed some scenes to avoid an R-rating. It didn't work. One scene featured Johnny Bartlett's ghost and his Ax-Crazy live girlfriend engaging in what can only be described as the weirdest foreplay ever. It features her stabbing his ectoplasmic chest with a butcher knife and him acting like he's having sex. Another scene features a more family-friendly death scene for Jeffrey Combs' character that has been shown in the airline and television versions of the film. Both versions have been released on DVD, but the Director's Cut has a behind-the-scenes special that's actually longer than the film.
    • He has also done this to his remake of King Kong.
  • Tinto Brass and Bob Guccione's infamous Caligula exists in no fewer than ten cuts, a result of the gross amount of Executive Meddling that occurred during the film's very Troubled Production and varying decency standards in the US and Europe.
  • Terry Gilliam's Brazil was in the midst of being recut by the film's producer at Universal to give it a happier ending. However, after Gilliam went behind the studio's back and set up private screenings for critics (which netted him a best picture award from the LA Film Critics Association), and humiliating Universal by taking out a full-page ad in Variety, they agreed to release his cut (which was still slightly shorter than his original version, which he had cut to fall within the running time specifications of his contact). The meddled-with "Love Conquers All" cut was the one shown on TV in syndication, and was released alongside Gilliam's original cut by the Criterion Collection on home video.
  • Ridley Scott:
    • Varying releases of Blade Runner over the years have resulted in five distinct versions: The Theatrical Cut (which includes a Philip Marlowe-style voiceover, and a happier ending, which used footage left over from The Shining); The International Cut (which is the same as The Theatrical Cut save for some additional gore during a particularly violent scene near the end); A Workprint Version (a rough cut which preceded the theatrical cuts, notably put together before scoring, which started being shown clandestinely at sci-fi conventions in the 90's); A so-called Director's Cut (released on in theatres in 1991, VHS in 1992, and DVD in 1997, which removed the voice-over and ending, which was more to Scott's liking, but was not created with his actual involvement); And lastly, the Final Cut, released in 2007 for the film's 25th anniversary, which Scott shot new footage featuring actress Joanna Cassidy and Benjamin Ford (Harrison's son) that was digitally superimposed into existing scenes of the film (the cut itself is very similar to the 1997 version), along with giving the print an a extensive restoration since this was first time it was released on high-def formats. It's these 5 cuts that were released together in boxsets on DVD, HD-DVD and Blu-Ray in December 2007, and then re-re-released on DVD & Blu-Ray in 2012 for the film's 30th anniversary.
    • Kingdom of Heaven was released in its theatrical cut (which Scott hated), and in a multi-disc Director's Cut, with which director, film critics, and many viewers were much happier. Specifically, the director's cut was over an hour longer and included a whole cut storyline, and several important pieces of character development.
    • Legend was substantially cut by a half-hour after poor test screenings and was altered further for its U.S. release in 1986 (this included an entirely different music score). Scott prepared a Director's Cut for a 2002 DVD release which reinstated the original score and 20 minutes of additional footage (and was considered lost until the sole surviving print was discovered in 2000).
    • Alien: When Fox requested a "Director's Cut" for the Special Edition release, Scott felt that an extended cut would ruin the film's pacing, and instead opted for an alternate cut using several deleted scenes. The end result was a "Director's Cut" that was actually two minutes shorter than the original film. He specifically mentions in his introduction of the DVD that it's not a Director's Cut, seeing how he was and still is perfectly happy with the original theatrical cut, but can be seen as simply an alternate version only created because Fox asked him to.
    • Scott's Robin Hood lost at least twenty minutes of footage before its theatrical release, including a scene that created a major plot hole. The Director's Cut DVD release restores it all.
  • The Superman film series:
    • Some of the re-added scenes in the Director's Cut of Superman expand on the Kryptonian stuff in the film, as well a scene featuring little Lois seeing little Clark running at superspeed. Her parents are played by the actors from the original TV series.
    • After nearly finishing production on Superman II, director Richard Donner was fired and replaced with Richard Lester, who reshot much of the film. The original theatrical cut is about 35% Donner footage and 65% Lester footage. In 2006, Richard Donner released his own cut of the film on DVD, which is composed of about 90% of his material, and makes use of rehearsal footage and screen tests to make up the parts he never got a chance to film properly.
  • This isn't just limited to theatrical movies. The Pilot Movie of Babylon 5 (called Babylon 5: The Gathering), when it first aired in 1993, was... not edited very well, to put it delicately. In 1998 the whole thing was re-edited from the ground up: deleted scenes were restored, embarrassing scenes were cut, the original audio of Laurel Takashima's dialogue was used, and the whole thing was re-scored by Christopher Franke. While it's still fairly cheap-looking, the result is a much more engaging film.
  • A similar thing was done in 2009 for the reissue of the Stargate SG-1 Pilot Movie, "Children of the Gods". Not only did the revised version clear up some at-the-time unfixed plot points (like how Apophis and his Jaffa departed through the Stargate in the beginning) and the motivation for Teal'c's Mook-Face Turn, but also removed such cringe-inducing moments like the nudity scene or Carter's infamous "reproductive organs" line. This came about from series creator Brad Wright's growing dissatisfaction with the original version, particularly with the full frontal nudity which was rumored to have been forced on him by then-series owners Showtime.
    • The movie that launched the series also had this done. Some scenes added to the Extended cut of the film show remains of some Anubis guards buried near the gate when it's dug up in the beginning.
  • The Halloween films had many TV Cuts made:
    • During the filming of the first sequel, John Carpenter shot more scenes for the ABC broadcast of the original to help it pad out the allotted time. These scenes don't do much; most of the added scenes occur at the beginning, with Loomis warning a board of health about Michael. One scene does manage to add something - Loomis and the hospital staff examine Michael's old room, where he has written the word "sister" on the wall, presumably in blood. This actually helps establish the twist in part 2, that Laurie is Michael's biological sister.
    • The sequel itself has a few new things for the TV Cut. These include some alternate cuts of scenes, some scene and dialogue extensions, and a scene added to the end that takes place in the ambulance.
    Laurie: We made it. We made it!
    • Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers has the most stunning example of this. Apparently, the film ran over time and budget, so the suits decided to take it over to see how they could screw it up. Their version is the Theatrical Cut. When the film was shown on TV, someone got a hold of the now infamous Producer's Cut. While the violence and cursing were trimmed, an assload of alternate takes and different opening narration were shown, and the entire last 20 minutes of the film is RADICALLY different from the Theatrical Cut. The main change is that the explanation for Michael's killing ways is altered: The Theatrical version offered a scientific reason, but the Producer's Cut says the reason is supernatural (which also explains why Michael is also growing bigger in each previous film. It's because his power is growing). It also shows a final scene with Dr. Loomis realizing that he has been cursed by Thorn. This was likely altered when Donald Pleasance died. An early trailer showed that the film was originally going to called "Halloween 666: The Curse of Michael Myers." This version is only available through bootleg video releases.
    • Halloween H20: Twenty Years Later has a TV Cut that does the violence and cussword trim, but also has some alternate scenes fun. One added scene gives the counselor played by Alan Arkin some development by revealing that his mother cheated on his travelling salesman father, and he got blamed for knowing, but doing nothing.
    • The Rob Zombie remake and its sequel has an Unrated Director's Cut on DVD.
  • The Highlander film series:
    • Highlander has a director's cut that adds some cut material back in-like the Kurgan licking the priest's arm, which had been cut in the US for being potentially offensive, and the World War 2 scene showing Rachel's origin.
    • Highlander II: The Quickening: When it ran over time and budget, the suits essentially rewrote the plot. As originally intended, (and shown in the Renegade Cut,) the immortals are from the ancient past and predate humanity, and not from outer space. The Theatrical Cut added that outer-space aspect (the planet Zeist plotline), but in doing so created one massive Plot Hole concerning MacLeod's reactivation of his immortal nature.
  • Another film that got a slight tweak was Weird Science. The TV version shows two scenes not in the Home Video Version:
    1. In the first few minutes of the film, the boys are in the kitchen during their viewing of the Frankenstein movie to get snacks. Gary grabs a ridiculous handful of frozen mini-pizzas and shoves them into the microwave.
    2. During the party, some guys in Devo flowerpot hats show up, and ask to be let in. Lisa asks the guests what they think. The guests vote to toss 'em, but Lisa lets them in anyway.
  • One of the earliest examples is Close Encounters of the Third Kind. After the film's successful initial release in 1977, Steven Spielberg convinced Columbia Pictures to re-edit the film and shoot new footage for scenes he never got to finish — though in exchange, he also had to shoot a sequence that took place inside the mothership, and that became the focus of the 1980 promotional campaign. For years this was the official final cut until the 1998 Collector's Edition (AKA Director's Cut), which includes most of the Special Edition footage and re-adds at least two scenes from the original theatrical release, but drops the McDonalds billboard shot and the mothership interior scene. There was also a TV-only cut that included all of the scenes from both the theatrical and special editions. A list of the various cuts and the differences between them is here. All three cuts can be found in the film's Blu-ray release.
  • Spielberg later caught some flack from his re-cut of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, which like the Star Wars special editions, have redone special effects (mostly CG expressions added to the E.T. puppet) and some cut scenes. Fans were especially upset that the FBI agents had their guns replaced with walkie-talkies, an obvious difference made all the more obvious by the FBI agents holding their walkie-talkies in both hands... with their index fingers extended. With the Blu-Ray, Spielberg has gone in the opposite direction, only releasing the original version. He's changed the stance to an "anti-Lucas" feeling old films should be left alone as they were.
  • Disney made Special Editions of both Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King for IMAX theaters (and prepared Aladdin). Along with remastering the films for the larger IMAX format, each film got an additional musical number; in both cases the songs were taken from the stage versions, although Beauty's "Human Again" was really a Cut Song from the movie. Unlike Star Wars, Disney had the foresight of making both the original and special editions included on the DVD releases, although neither "original" one was the original animation. (In the case of Beauty and the Beast, a third version was added, a work-in-progress print shown on the New York Film Festival prior to the film's release, previously available as a separate laserdisc.) Pocahontas also had a special edition, although it was not released theatrically. It added "If I Never Knew You", a Cut Song that did poorly in test screenings but better-establishes the lovers' relationship as the film's climax approaches.
  • The broadcast premiere of Who Framed Roger Rabbit had an extra scene cut from the theatrical version. Eddie is caught snooping around in Jessica's dressing room and is taken to Toontown, and the next morning he wakes up with a toon pig's head painted on top of his own. The scene is included as an extra on the DVD.
    • The removal of this scene causes a slight plot hole in the released version. With the scene intact, we see that Eddie returns to his office to shower off the pigs head, which is when Jessica arrives. When he exits the bathroom, he has very clearly just been taking a shower (he's soaking wet). But because Viewers Are Morons, the producers apparently decided no one would be able to tell he had been showering, and added in the sound of a toilet flushing. Perhaps we are supposed to assume he was giving himself a swirlie?
    • An entry on a Cracked list explains why it was good that this scene had been cut.
  • Terry Jones was never happy with the original version of Erik the Viking. Some years later he supervised a re-edit that was carried out by his son, referred to as the "Director's Son's Cut". However, the quality of the recut is up for debate among fans, many of whom consider the recut to mangle the film and remove most of the funny non sequitur scenes.
  • The films Planet Terror and Death Proof were filmed with the specific purpose of cutting large chunks out of them, and were in their theatrical release bundled as the faux B-Movie feature Grindhouse. The DVD releases restore (most) of the scenes cut for the theatrical version. Death Proof in particular actually suffers from this, because the theatrical release takes a good 40 minutes before anything interesting happens. In the extended cut, it's a full hour before it picks up. And the lap dance doesn't count. It was much more interesting when you didn't see it. Plus, the original theatrical cut of Grindhouse wasn't released overseas, and is only on DVD in Japan (it was released on Blu-Ray in America, though); the intermission's trailer spoofs (save Machete) were dropped in the process. However, in the U.S. the pay-cable Encore movie networks have shown this cut.
  • Army of Darkness is especially odd in that there are several cuts depending on whether it's the theatrical release, domestic television broadcast, overseas market release or the Director's Cut. Some include the original ending (which was the one preferred by director Sam Raimi, but was changed at the request of the studio, which considered it "too depressing"), some include the theatrical ending, some include the extended windmill scene (strangely enough, the television broadcast has it, but the theatrical version didn't), some change the dialogue between Ash and Bad Ash, and some include other minor differences. Fans could have a field day just editing in their favorite versions of each scene, though the theatrical ending, where Ash confronts a Deadite in S-Mart usually ranks as just one more Crowning Moment of Awesome for fans of the series.
  • Watchmen gets both a Director's Cut and an Extended Cut. Oddly, the Extended Cut was given a home-release months after the Theatrical and Director's Cuts. Both new cuts are pretty substantial. The Director's Cut adds pretty much everything that was shot, minus the Tales of the Black Freighter tie-ins on the street corner. It bumps up the running time to three hours, a full half-hour. It's definitely a better movie for it, featuring more character development and more scenes that were in the comic. The Extended Cut adds another half-hour (bringing it to three and a half hours), featuring the entire Black Freighter animated feature woven into the movie and the accompanying street-corner bits. Your Mileage Will Vary on that one, since the animated features are more heavy handed and feel dropped in (unlike the careful weaving present in the comic), while the new live-action segments show how normal citizens react to the events around them.
  • James Cameron's 1989 sci-fi epic The Abyss was cut down by Cameron himself from from around 2 hours, 51 minutes to about 2 hours, 26 minutes for its theatrical release, with short bits removed from many scenes throughout the film, and a massive cut near the end of the film that focused on the aliens threatening mankind with extinction because of their worries over humans destroying the planet in a nuclear holocaust. Cameron said he did this because certain scenes that read well as screenplay didn't translate to film with the effectiveness he wanted. In a bit of Averted Executive Meddling, he revealed that the 20th Century Fox higher-ups were actually, to quote Cameron, "horrified" when he told them he was cutting the end sequence differently. After the success of 1991's Terminator 2, however, Cameron used some money from a new contract to go back and finalize The Abyss into its initial 2 hour, 51 minute form, and this was later released as the "Special Edition."
  • The Director's Cut of The Butterfly Effect has additional scenes and a much darker ending: pre-natal suicide.
  • Vincent Gallo's infamous film The Brown Bunny debuted at the Cannes Film Festival to much disdain; Roger Ebert called it "the worst film in the history of Cannes."note  Later, when the film appeared in United States theaters, it had been re-edited, removing 26 minutes from what had been a 118 minute film, and Ebert gave the new version three out of four stars, saying that it was amazing how much of a difference the editing made.note 
  • Lethal Weapon and Lethal Weapon 2 have Director's Cuts scenes on DVD: In LW1, there's the sniper shootout scene, a scene with Murtagh practicing in the shooting range, the hooker scene and a couple more scenes, and in LW2 there's a pool scene in Leo Getz' lobby.
  • Sam Peckinpah's Cult Classic film Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid was a particularly infamous case of Executive Meddling, culminating in MGM actually taking the film away from Peckinpah and releasing a considerably shorter version that nearly the entire cast panned and refused to be associated with. A director's cut version was shown once, but didn't make it to the general public until 15 years after the film's initial release. And just to make things more confusing, the DVD has 3 different versions.
  • The R-Rated director's cut of 2003's Daredevil totally combined this with Better on DVD, restoring 30 minutes cut from the theatrical version, which included a completely removed subplot where Matt Murdock must prove the innocence of a man played by Coolio, extra helpings of blood, and a couple more nods to the source material. It also altered the rainy-rooftop/screams-for-help scene between Matt and Elektra, making Matt more heroic by leaving Elektra to save a life instead of bedding her as the screams die off. Although it does retain some of the more divisive aspects of the theatrical cut such as the playground fight and the nu-metal soundtrack, general consensus is that the director's cut is a legitimately good movie (compared to the lukewarm response of the TC).
  • The Director's Cut of Dark City makes many changes to the theatrical cut, most of them minor, but one major change is the removal of the Opening Narration which explains the entire mystery that they were forced to put into the theatrical cut. The Director's Cut is universally regarded as a better film.
  • The Director's Cut of Donnie Darko greatly alters the pacing of the film, adding deleted scenes and new special effects, and switching the soundtrack of the movie around. Author Richard Kelly regards this version not as a director's cut (this title was the publisher's idea) as he considers the theatrical version just fine in its own right. Instead, to him the new version is a special edition of sorts.
  • Originally produced as a five-hour Mini Series for German television, Das Boot was edited down to 150 minutes for its original theatrical release. In 1997 Wolfgang Petersen made a new Director's Cut edit for a theatrical reissue, which clocks in at just under 210 minutes. Both the miniseries and 1997 versions have been released on DVD.
  • In 2001 Apocalypse Now was re-edited by Francis Ford Coppola into a new extended version titled Apocalypse Now Redux, which adds almost an hour of additional footage and is regarded as an entirely different film by the director, criticsnote , and the British Moral Guardiansnote .
  • Every Kamen Rider movie since Project G4 has had a Director's Cut released, adding at least a bit of new footage.
    • In the case of I'm Born!, it also added new songs for both hero and villain.
    • Double and Decade: Movie Wars 2010 gets an important revision in its Director's Cut. In every Movie Wars film (and in the theatrical cut of this film), the format usually goes that the movie begins with the previous Rider's segment (in this case, Decade), follows with the segment of the incumbent Rider at the time of release (Double here) and ends with a team-up final battle. The problem here is that the team-up here has more to do with the Decade segment, meaning the Double segment breaks the narrative flow. The Director's Cut rectifies this by putting the Double segment first. The Director's Cut also explains away the film's trailer at the end of Decade's last episode having absolutely nothing to do with the final product (due to behind-the-scene shenanigans) as being All Just a Dream.
  • In the theatrical version of The Return Of The Living Dead "Fuck You" is embroidered across the back of Freddy's jacket. In order to be able to show the movie on television, scenes were reshot with a jacket that reads "Television Version."
  • The Thief and the Cobbler was first conceived by Richard Williams (who would eventually become animation director of Who Framed Roger Rabbit) in 1964, but spent almost 30 years in Development Hell. Williams eventually signed a deal with Warner Bros. . in 1990 to release the film, but they had no faith in it since the film took way too long to release, plus Disney was about to come out with their version of Aladdin, so they pulled out. Then, the Completion Bond Company bought the rights to it in 1992, and a year later, producer Fred Calvert with Majestic Films released it in South Africa and Australia as The Princess and the Cobbler. Many of the scenes from Williams' workprint were cut, plus new dialogue, songs, voices (where there really weren't any before), and scenes (poorly animated by various companies and freelance artists across the world) were hastily added in. In 1995, it would be released in the U.S. by Miramax as Arabian Knight (later under the original title), where even more was butchered. An unofficial "Recobbled Cut" was made by a fan in 2006 that restored Williams' original vision as much as possible, but Williams has since disowned the film regardless.
  • The films directed by Orson Welles post-Citizen Kane were a magnet for Executive Meddling, and as such can be found in several different cuts on home video. The official DVD releases of Touch of Evil and Mr. Arkadin, for instance, each have three different cuts in the set. A similar release is allegedly planned for his Othello.
  • Salt saw two additional cuts on DVD, both with different endings that cut the Sequel Hook: a Director's Cut where The Bad Guy Wins and an Extended Cut where Salt goes to Russia.
  • The film version of The Outsiders was re-released as The Outsiders: The Complete Novel - deleted scenes that were in the book but not the original film were added back in, and more licensed music from the time period was added.
  • The American release version of The Man Who Fell to Earth was cut by about twenty minutes; this was partially to avoid an X rating for its graphic sexual content. Other scenes were reordered (this movie is not quite linear). Eventually the original cut was made available in the U.S., and it's this one that appears in The Criterion Collection.
  • The Professional/Leon exists in two different versions. The Professional is the American cut; Leon is the international cut (sometimes called version integrale.) The American version is edited down mainly to remove any moral quandaries about Matilda's actions - in the longer international version her crush on Leon is not so innocent, and more training scenes show her assisting with actual hits.
  • While nowadays considered the Franchise Killer prequel to Gettysburg, Gods and Generals actually received a standing ovation at its first pre-release screening. However, it ran for almost 5 hours. The studio's solution: cut it down to a more manageable 3 1/2. This theatrical version, while shorter, didn't have a central theme or even much of a narrative structure. It was subsequently lambasted by critics, ignored by audiences (although many who actually bothered to see it claimed to enjoy it), and wound up being such a financial bomb that the studio didn't even bother releasing the original cut until 8 years later in 2011. Among other things, the longer version edits out some of the religious preaching, adds a subplot with a young John Wilkes Booth, and includes the Battle of Antietam. So far, several people have said that this new cut fixes most (if not all) of the theatrical cut's main problems.
  • The Grudge Director's Cut features several new and extended scenes, serving to add more depth to the characters, depict more explicit violence and grisly imagery (such as the Saeki murders being shown in more detail - the theatrical version barely shows any of it - and explaining Kayako's death rattle and her unsettling, jerky movement, as well as longer shots of Yoko's disembodied jaw and, later, her mutilated face), and to add to the feel and atmosphere. Also, Susan's vignette is switched around.
  • The original release of Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery had two scenes replaced for later DVD versions.
    • In the original theatrical and VHS versions, in the scene where the unfrozen Dr. Evil proposes a plan, after unsuccessfully suggesting to blackmail the royal family by revealing that Prince Charles had an affair and would have to divorce, (Number Two reveals that Prince Charles already had an affair and is divorced,) Dr. Evil proposes to use a laser to make a hole in the ozone layer to increase the risk of skin cancer, unless the world pays him a "hefty ransom." Number Two says, "That also has already been done." However, in latest DVD releases, Number Two says, "That also already has happened." Two aspects on this line change:
      • The initial release of the film was after the fatal car accident of Princess Diana (the one Prince Charles divorced), so they eliminated the "blackmailing the Royal Family" plot and probably made Dr. Evil just attempt to plan to shoot a laser in the ozone layer and tweak it enough for Number Two to say "That has already been done," minus the "also."
      • The (Real Life) hole in the ozone layer was not created by a single supervillian's laser but by the combined effect of several pollutants, with a significant amount due to by products of specific products/processes from the '50's to the '80's. So what Number Two is referring to in later releases is the fact that the hole has already been made, not that someone (intentionally) beat Dr. Evil to the punch.
    • The other scene is when Austin is in the bathroom looking for Number Two, who has set a trap for him. Austin sits on the toilet and is attacked in a compartment by Dr. Evil's Irish assassin Paddy O'Brien. Austin grunts as he fights with O'Brien, and a Texan (Tom Arnold) is in another compartment thinking Austin is crapping. Austin groans "DO...YOU...WORK...FOR...NUMBER TWO!! DO...YOU...WORK...FOR...NUMBER TWO!!", prompting the Texan to respond "You show that turd who's boss!" In the later versions, the "DO YOU WORK FOR NUMBER TWO!" take is replaced by a take filmed around the time of the originally released clip, but this time it's "WHO...DOES...NUMBER...TWO...WORK...FOR! WHO...DOES...NUMBER...TWO...WORK...FOR!" The reason for this minor edit is unclear.
  • Michael Mann released Director's Cuts for Miami Vice, Ali, The Last of the Mohicans and Manhunter, but all of his films were re-cut in some way following their theatrical runs for DVD release. The changes are minor, and are rarely more than slight changes in dialogue scenes.
  • William Friedkin re-worked The French Connection for its Blu Ray release by putting the film through a digital intermediate and tinting the colors to blue to create a more neo-noir look. Fans of the film were not pleased.
  • Metropolis was only shown in its original form for a few months in Germany. American studios balked at showing such a long film, so Lang cut the running length nearly in half. And then the cut footage was lost. There were later attempts to reconstruct the original cut, based on existing footage and guesswork. In 1984, Giorgio Moroder made a colorized version with an 80's pop soundtrack. Finally, in 2007, nearly all of the cut footage was rediscovered in a museum in Argentina. The version based on this, called The Complete Metropolis, is probably the closest we'll ever get to a definitive version.
  • There's TV cuts of Zucker-Abrams-Zucker films like Airplane! and The Naked Gun, featuring material that wasn't in the theatrical version (presumably to replace the R-rated jokes that had to be cut for broadcast).
  • Night of the Living Dead: 30th Anniversary Edition, which is often regarded as inferior to the original due to an obnoxious soundtrack and badly spliced in new scenes.
  • Despite the reputation directors' cuts have for being self-indulgent and bloated, Stanley Kubrick considered the UK cut of The Shining to be the definitive one (as opposed to the US cut, which is twenty minutes longer).
  • The Star Trek Film Series:
    • Star Trek The Motion Picture has gone through a few editions. Director Robert Wise considered the original theatrical release a "rough cut", due to it being rushed to meet Paramount's premiere date (to the point where the film reels were still wet from developing when they were shipped out). An extended cut appeared on ABC and was released on VHS as a "Special Longer Edition" in 1983, though there were issues with some of the added footage, some of which was from the original version of the "Spock Walk" with different spacesuits (with one shot of Kirk featuring a very visible sound stage). Wise would later revisit the work, supervising the "Special Director's Edition" DVD release in 2001, which allowed him to complete the film closer to what he had intended in 1979, had he had more time. Interestingly enough, the first Blu-Ray release of The Motion Picture is the theatrical cut, and as of early 2014, the Director's Edition has yet to be released on Blu-Ray.
    • Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan also received a "Director's Edition" DVD release. Like The Motion Picture, the ABC airings had included some additional footage not in the theatrical release, and some of that footage was used in the Director's Edition, along with additional previously-unused footage.
    • Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country did not get a home video release of the theatrical cut until the 2009 DVD and subsequent Blu-Ray releases. All prior versions (including the Collector's Edition) used an extended cut, which featured a member of Starfleet Command who was entirely excised from the theatrical release (among some other slight changes).
  • The Blu-Ray releases of the first two Harry Potter films include both the theatrical cut and an extended cut. The extended cuts basically just re-incorporate the same Deleted Scenes which were extras on the original DVD releases. The Blu-Rays of the third movie onward only include the theatrical cut.
  • The DVD version of Grizzly Man removed Timothy Treadwell's interview with David Letterman (where Letterman joked that Timothy would be eaten by the bears), allegedly at Letterman's request. The TV version, however, retained the scene.
  • Dawn of the Dead is another legendary example of this. There are three "official" cuts of the film: the Romero-cut, the Argento-cut and the so-called Director's Cut. The Romero-cut was prepared for the American and UK theatrical releases by director George A. Romero himself. It has some comedic elements and an ironic, "comic-book like" feel. It uses a combination of soundtrack produced by the band Goblins and royalty-free library music. Romero censured a lot of gore he believed to be superfluous from this version. It is Romero's final and preferred cut of the film. The Argento-cut (sometimes referred to as Zombi after it's Italian title) was edited by Dario Argento for the mainland European theatrical releases. Compered to Romero's cut it is grimmer with a more serious mood. Argento made it shorter than Romero's cut to be more action oriented and have tighter pacing, but also lost a lot of character development in the proses. The gore however is left intact.note  It uses the Goblins score through-out, utilizing none of the library music. The Director's Cut (sometimes refereed to as the Cannes-cut or the extended cut) is usually assumed to be the cut that Romero prepared for film's screening at Cannes. It is similar to Romero's final cut, but have uncensored gore and is even longer. Because of this it have the most content of any of the cuts, but also is the one with the worst pacing. Furthermore it completely lacks the Goblins score and use only the library music. As none of these cuts were created from any of the other cuts, but rather made (to some degree) independently, each version have unique scenes and they sometimes use different shots of the same scene. Of these three cut fans usually prefer the cut they watched first. In addition there are many cuts produced for more specific international screenings, TV and home releases based on these three cuts. Most of these was made for censorship, but some merge content from two or more of the "official" cuts or add scenes to explain the source of the zombie outbreak and there is even one version that cuts the film down to only 48 minutes. There's a box set going by the name of "Dawn of the Dead, The Ultimate Edition" which features the three "official" cuts described above (Romero-cut, Argento-cut and the "Director's Cut").
  • The TV version of Happy Gilmore had Happy confronting the orderly who has been enslaving old ladies including his grandmother and punching him out the window. The theatrical and DVD versions cut this scene, making the orderly a Karma Houdini and left that subplot unresolved. One DVD release does feature this scene (among others) as a Deleted Scene in the Special Features.
  • The French 1980s art-house classic, Betty Blue was re-released in 1991 in a Director's Cut that added over one hour of additional footage to the film. While this may seem excessive (for a film that already seemed to revel in excess), the extra scenes shed considerable light on various plot points; Betty's descent into madness, for example, is better contextualised in this new version.
  • One of Jackie Chan's early forays into Hollywood, The Protector, didn't meet with Chan's approval, so he made a re-cut version for the Hong Kong market, re-shooting fight scenes in his own style, cutting out/replacing gratuitous nudity, and adding a subplot featuring Cantopop singer and actress, Sally Yeh.
  • Godzilla: King of the Monsters!, itself already a recut of Godzilla (1954), received one when an italian filmmaker by the name of Luigi Cozzi decided to release the movie in Italy. Since italian theaters were doubtful of black and white films, however, Cozzi also "colorized" the movie as well. This "colorized" version of the movie had scenes cut for pacing, as well as added stock footage from other movies and newsreels accompanied by electronic music. The result is often referred to as "Cozzilla", and sometimes as "Psychedelic Godzilla".
  • The successful international release of Cinema Paradiso was cut by around fifty minutes to entirely remove a whole subplot that the original Italian audiences had reacted badly to in which the older Salvatore and Elena have an unsuccessful attempt to rekindle their love affair, and it's made much clearer how badly Alfredo's sabotage of their youthful relationship affected both their emotional lives. The Director's Cut, which adds this material back in, makes it a much darker and sadder film.
  • Witchfinder General has a particularly complex range of alternate versions. Many versions, especially the UK one, were heavily cut to censor the graphic violence and torture scenes. Conversely, the film's producers added additional scenes, in particular to certain European releases, featuring sex and nudity between Hopkins's henchmen and bar girls, which the director, Michael Reeves, was very unhappy with. Reeves's early death meant that he wasn't around in the home video age to advise on an official "director's cut". There are a number of quite different versions circulating that have been released for home video, screened in cinemas, or broadcast, some of which contain both the violence and the sex, some of which contain only one of them, and some of which have neither.
  • Underworld has an Extended Cut. Director Len Wiseman makes it very clear in the commentary that he does not consider either the theatrical or extended cuts his true vision, but seems to understand the reasoning behind both; the theatrical cut having been cut down for time, and the extended cut having a mixture of scenes he wanted to add back in, and extra footage he regarded as useless, so that the studio could lure in as many repeat buyers as possible by bragging about the number of minutes added back in.
  • Fritz Lang's The Testament Of Dr Mabuse has seen at least five different incarnations since its 1933 release. Lang's original cut was banned by Nazi Germany but saw release in Austria and Hungary. The Nazis drastically reedited the movie into anti-Semitic propaganda in the late '30s. The American release did the converse, making the (already pretty explicit) Nazi parallels more overt. In 1952 it was cut from 124 to 82 minutes, dubbed into English and released as The Crimes of Dr. Mabuse. Lang's original, German-language cut did not resurface until 1973. All this, plus Lang's French-language version filmed simultaneously to the original but with different actors.
  • Yellow Submarine came out on DVD in 1999 with the "Hey Bulldog" segment (which was not in the original release) added. The 2012 re-release is virtually identical save for it came out on Blu-Ray as well. Added goodies were included with the 2012 re-release.
  • The special edition of Avatar added in an alternate opening as well as some dialogue and scenes that better explained the story's universe.

  • When Sir Terry Pratchett's publishers finally got fed up of sending out thousands of letters saying there was no demand for a reprint of The Carpet People (his first novel and bordering on Old Shame), it was only after Pratchett rewrote substantial amounts of the novel. Part of this was to correct what he saw as simple poor writing by his younger self, but he also felt the need to change the political messages of the novel from the original's simplistic High Fantasy monarchism to reflect his grown-up respect for democracy.
  • Doubleday Publishers thought Stephen King's The Stand was too big, so the original edition had about 500 pages trimmed. Twelve years, later they released the Complete and Uncut edition, with the pages restored and some updating by King.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The original Battlestar Galactica Pilot Movie was first shown as a film in Canada to raise capital for the series. This version is trimmed. Then, it was subsequently released as a three-part episode for re-runs. The full, uncut pilot is available on the DVD set, as are a slew of deleted scenes from every single episode of the series.
    • The new series also has a slew of "Extended Unrated Versions" of many episodes and telemovies. These versions are available on DVD.
    • And editing scenes to fit with current-day Sunday-morning Japanese broadcast censors.
  • Have I Got News for You and QI have extended versions of their shows, broadcast the following night: Have I Got A Bit More News For You and QI XL respectively. However, some of these were not shown on The BBC for various reasons (The next night having sport on instead, and sometimes due to sensitivity of the material.) These episodes tend to get their first airing on Dave.
  • Rather than make new episodes for whatever reason, Disney recut the first season of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers in 2010, mostly just adding a few cheap visual effects - well, a few more cheap visual effects. Part of it was that censors are stricter than they used to be, so Hit Flashes needed to be added. Episodes also tended to get a minute or two of Filler edited in due to slightly longer runtimes.
  • iCarly: Nickelodeon aired a special extended version of iSaved Your Life a week after the original airing, that included seven minutes of previously cut footage. The pilot episode also has an extended version, as does the special iCarly Saves TV.
  • Similarly, when it premiered after the Kids Choice Awards, Victorious aired its first episode as an extended version with three minutes of added footage. It has not aired again since but can be downloaded on iTunes.
  • Nick did a similar thing with Legendary Battle, the finale of Power Rangers Super Megaforce. Two days after it's US premiere, a longer version was aired on Nicktoons. The extra scenes included an extended version of the final fight between the Rangers and Emperor Malvo, as well as a few extra scenes with the returning Rangers, including one scene with Karone pulling off an extra Legend Shift, showing her as Astronema.
  • The Adventures of Pete & Pete:
    • The first season (1993) was eight episodes long, and succeeded by five "special" half-hours made over the span of three years (1991-1993). These were used to fill out the first season, and therefore had the opening credits sequence edited in. Mike Maronna, Big Pete's actor, had gone through puberty in between the first special and first season, meaning that the theme song depicted him as much taller and more-mature looking than he was in the actual episode. Very jarring.
    • Before the specials, there were eighteen shorts, a handful of which were included on the DVD. In order to replace the old Vanity Plate from the 1990s with Nick's current one for the release, the last few seconds of each episode become only voiceover running over the vanity plate.
  • The 3-2-1 Contact series was condensed and re-edited into 3-2-1 Classroom Contact in 1992.
  • The "Director's Cut" of Red Dwarf: Back to Earth as seen on the DVD release, which edits the three 25-minute episodes together into a single one-hour-long special. As you can see, the Director's Cut is actually significantly shorter than the full broadcast version, trimming all the jokes that didn't really work and other filler — the end result is generally regarded to be much better.
  • Network reruns of Saturday Night Live sometimes differ greatly from the originally aired live show; this can range from minor fixes of technical glitches and removal of promotions for the next live show (especially common when Don Pardo announced them over the end credits), to changes in the running order, to even the removal of controversial or poorly received material, replaced by sketches from other shows or unaired material. Since 1985, the dress rehearsal is recorded for all shows, and the rerun version may either use the dress take or a combination of scenes from dress and air.
  • Two versions of the 1979 adaptation of Salem's Lot exist: the original three-hour mini-series version and a two-hour movie version released in Europe that was also briefly distributed on video in the United States. The European version is unique in that it also contains some violent content omitted from the mini-series.
  • As mentioned above, this has happened a couple of times in Doctor Who.
    • During the 1970s there was a tradition of repeating one of the year's stories as a continuous "movie" rather than episodic broadcast at Christmas time. For six-episode stories, this sometimes involved significant cuts to fit a 90-120 minute timeslot.
    • There are also alterations for home video releases. Mostly this simply involves adding optional CGI special effects to replace particularly glaringly bad original effects. Four stories: "Enlightenment", "Planet of Fire", "The Five Doctors", and "The Curse of Fenric"; have had much more significantly altered versions released on VHS or DVD. These have deleted scenes added back in, and some scenes swapped around, shortened, or deleted to make the pacing better for viewing at one sitting. Probably the most justified case is "The Curse of Fenric", where many fans consider that the plot is much easier to follow in the home video cut. The worst is "The Five Doctors", which simply added all deleted footage back in without much consideration of whether it was worthwhile, and is most notorious for including a scene which was cut due to a moment of unintentional, in-universe-incestuous, sexual chemistry between Peter Davison and Carole Ann Ford as the Fifth Doctor and his grand-daughter Susan.

  • The Beatles, after recording The White Album, tried to get back to their roots in spontaneous, energetic rock-n-roll with a film/album titled Get Back. Internal tensions and creative differences prevented Get Back from being completed; instead, material from these sessions was released as the film and album Let It Be. Phil Spector produced the album and added overdubs to some songs. Paul McCartney (who was the main advocate of the "back to the roots" approach in the first place) wasn't happy with Spector's production. Decades later, when opportunity arose to re-edit Let It Be, Paul jumped at it. This new version (titled Let It Be... Naked) stripped away Phil Spector's overdubs, featured a different song selection and track order, and used different takes of some of the songs. Naked also used digital editing (which obviously hadn't been available when Let It Be was originally released) to remove tape noises and to pitch-correct a few of the vocals.
  • The Prayer Chain's 1995 album Mercury had been subject to a great deal of Executive Meddling prior to release: three songs were dropped, another song was added, and the whole thing was remixed to be less rough around the edges. In 2011, the band took the original master tapes and rereleased the album (via their Bandcamp page) "in its original order, with the original mixes, just as it was sent off to the label", under the new title Humb.
  • Sleep's Dopesmoker is essentially the director's cut of Jerusalem, although it's a bit more complicated than that: their label balked at their turning in an album that was one song stretched out to over sixty minutes of Epic Rocking, so Sleep compromised a little by cutting about ten minutes and splitting it into six arbitrarily divided tracks, with no silence between them. The label still wouldn't release it and the band broke up over the ordeal, but Jerusalem, the edited version saw release on a different label afterwards. A few years later came the Dopesmoker version, which used a different mix, restored the ten cut minutes, and indexed it as one long track as intended.
  • Russell Elavedo originally mixed The Dandy Warhols' 2003 album Welcome To The Monkey House, but Capitol Records had it given a glossier mix by Peter Wheatley without the band's permission and released that instead. In 2009, The Dandy Warhols released the album as originally intended under the title The Dandy Warhols Are Sound: Aside from the different mix, the tracks are presented in a different order, the song titles are sometimes slightly different, and the song "Welcome To The Monkey House" itself is cut, while the previously unreleased song "Pete Int'l Spaceport" is added.
  • Morrissey's Special Edition reissues of his first two albums, Viva Hate and Kill Uncle, both alter the original running order. On Viva Hate, the song "Ordinary Boys" is replaced with an unpolished, unreleased demo "Treat Me Like a Human Being", and "Late Night, Maudlin Street" is slightly shortened. On Kill Uncle, two b-sides are inserted into the middle of the album, and the original version of "There's a Place in Hell for Me and My Friends" is replaced with a new, live-in-the-studio version.
  • Talking Heads' album Stop Making Sense (meant to accompany the concert film of the same name) only had 9 of the 16 songs from the film, and most of them were heavily edited. David Byrne stated that he wanted the album to be a separate experience from the film, rather than just a soundtrack. However, in 1999, it was remastered and re-edited as Stop Making Sense: Special New Edition. This version was a proper soundtrack for the film, as it had all 16 songs and minimal editing.
  • The Yes album Union (generally regarded as one of Yes' worst) got an updated re-release called (Re)Union that actually removed content compared to the original version. While the removal of some of the weaker and more bizarre tracks arguably made the album stronger musically, the fact that none of it was replaced with anything new meant it was not embraced by fans and is considered Fanon Discontinuity by most of the fanbase.

    Web Originals 

    Western Animation 
  • Gargoyles had this foisted on its Pilot Movie. According to Word of God, it was originally aired as a five-parter, this was trimmed into much shorter version to be shown in conjunction with a Disneyland Gargoyles ride. When the House of Mouse decided to release it on videocassette, they chose the shorter version because it had already been cleaned up. The longer has since been released on DVD.
  • Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer has used at least three different endings over the years: one which pays off Yukon Cornelius' pickaxe-licking, one that shows Rudolph and Santa gathering the Misfit Toys, and one that combines both of them. Three versions also exist of the scene in which Rudolph and Hermey become friends, the second containing a completely different song.
  • Reruns of the original Transformers cartoon were rebranded Transformers Generation Two, with the addition of a "Cybernet Space Cube" that provided new Idiosyncratic Wipes.
  • Whenever 101 Dalmatians: The Series is aired on Disney Cinemagic in the U.K., some lines were cut out to add more commercial time.

  • David Morgan-Mar edited and resubmitted one of the Irregular Webcomic! podcasts to add some missing sound effects and commented that he had "done a George Lucas". He's also gone back and edited an earlier strip (Strip #1639), which featured an appearance by The Pope, because someone sent him a customized Lego Pope figure and he wanted to include it in place of his own version.

Alternative Title(s):

Done A George Lucas, Directors Cut, Han Shot First