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George Lucas Altered Version

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Announcer: Yes, all the charm of a simple little cartoon will melt before your eyes as it is replaced by newer and more standardized animation!
Trey Parker: In the scene at the bus stop, we always meant to have Imperial walkers and giant dewback lizards in the background, but simply couldn't afford it.

Sometimes film directors are not fully satisfied with their movies, and want to go back and re-edit them, taking out scenes that they don't like, adding those that were originally cut, rearranging dialogue or otherwise playing around with all the material that was made in the original creation of the film. Studios have long produced "extended" or "unrated" versions of movies that the directors were already satisfied with, as a promotional gimmick to attract potential DVD buyers. This is generally considered a Re-Cut or Director's Cut.

This trope goes one step past that, where a work is extensively changed by its creators (and sometimes not even them) to update the work with modern technology or new footage that was not available or recorded at the time the work was originally created. Film Purists (among both critics and directors) sometimes take issue with it, believing that altering the original film is diluting the charm of the original, diminishing the contributions of the original creative team (such as splicing in The Other Darrin or a Fake Shemp over the original actor), or, worse, altering the context of scenes in how they played out originally and the plot itself. These changes include:

  • Surround Sound mixes of films originally released with mono soundtracks.
  • Sound added to a silent film; the complications come from deciding on exactly what type of music to include, silent films sometimes had live accompaniment with music written especially for that film, but not all silent movies had a specific soundtrack attached to it.
  • Colorization applied to what was originally in black and white.
  • Replacing what was originally a Special Effect Failure (sometimes producing an irony in that the replacement is equally bad).
  • Adding new effects to existing scenes, which may include removing or adding people or objects.
  • Newly recorded dialogue, sound effects or shots, often alongside a new edit to adjust the pacing.
  • Color, hue, saturation and other image changes made for a new release. Digital Destruction covers when this is done to a detriment. note 

Named for George Lucas, who's done this to all of his films, most notably the first three Star Wars films (A New Hope,note  The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi). Some fans have widely criticized the reissues of the original Star Wars series, which they argue contrasts heavily with films otherwise clearly made between 1976-1983 but having bits and pieces of modern VFX tacked on. See the film examples for more on this and Lucas.

Many times in the case of sequels and otherwise expanded franchises, these new versions are meant to help the franchise align better both visually and potentially fix Continuity Snarls. It's easier to sell box sets if they all have the same font.

You can expect a considerable backlash when this trope appears, but as always consider that Tropes Are Not Bad. Art is malleable, and having new work to appreciate can make us review both the old and new in a new light. These new versions are often intended to introduce the work to a new audience and often succeeds. In some cases the new version dominates the new releases, but in turn this can make the original almost Shrouded in Myth. Indeed, there are cottage industries on the internet of comparing different versions side by side, often using Keep Circulating the Tapes methods to acquire the different versions. Conversely, similar complaints are leveled towards a Re-Cut in general, believing a theatrical release should be the end of editing.

It's worth noting that the majority of creators do not have final cut privilege or a copyright on their work, being really owned by the corporations. Sometimes the new version is made by those who had nothing to do with the original, and the level of clout needed to do this to your own work is rare. On the other hand, sometimes the new version is made by the creators themselves, who finally got the chance to edit the work the way they wanted to in the first place.

This process is sometimes referred to as a Remaster but that is actually about cleaning the image and/or audio to update it for modern entertainment formats, which often involves a brand new film transfer to help preserve it or restoration of old audio tracks. Colorization is similar, as making the colorization usually involves a remastering of the original to maximize quality.note 

See also Orwellian Retcon, where the work is altered to fit with later works in the same story. The musical version of this trope is The Not-Remix, while Gaming examples would fall under Updated Re-release and more serialized worksnote  get New First Comics.

Strictly speaking, this trope applies the most when the alterations are done purely for artistic reasons as opposed to purely censorship or digital recreation in instances where the original print has badly deteriorated. Contrast Bowdlerise or Macekre where someone other than the creator alters the work, usually for localization.

Example subpages:

Other examples:

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    Anime & Manga 
  • Sometimes the artwork in manga originally published in magazines will be redrawn for the compilation volumes or tankoubon.
    • It also used to be common for manga to be flipped when exported to the US. This pretty much died in the early 2000s after publishers discovered that un-flipped manga didn't sell any differently, and after mangaka like Akira Toriyama spoke out against the practice.
  • It's pretty standard for anime episodes to be retouched or modified for reruns/home video, sometimes with more obscene content, though usually it's just fixing Off-Model problems like bad eyes/animations or redoing the background a little, which is appreciated. The retouched versions are usually brought over to the states, but sometimes the broadcast versions are accidentally given to the US publishers.
    • On the other hand, the practice of removing censorship such as Scenery Censors, Censor Shadows or Censor Steam for DVD/Blu-ray releases, as compared to most TV versions, is generally just seen as a marketing strategy to sell more of the things. In some cases it is needed however since the scenes might be so brutal/full of Fanservice that having them uncensored on TV just would not work (in the most extreme versions, the TV version has to resort to still pictures with sound only).
    • Sailor Moon Crystal is a show that benefited greatly from the Blu-ray remaster, which fixed many of the show's notorious Off-Model animation, continuity errors, and other glitches, resulting from the show's rushed production to premiere online. The Japanese TV broadcast features the revised episodes (with a couple more additional changes), as does the North American DVD/Blu-ray release.
    • The second anime season of Date A Live also got an incredible make-over for home releases, with over 40 minutes worth of content added, and fixing numerous Off-Model issues.
  • It also used to be very standard for anime series to be re-edited when exported to other countries to remove obscene content among many other changes. 4Kids and Saban were well-known for practicing this. This is rare now, especially on home video, but still occasionally happens to get a series shown on TV.
  • Funimation has an interesting case of this for their English dub of Dragon Ball Z; the original DVD singles (3 episodes each) released alongside the TV run in 1996-2003 mostly covered what was on TV, but these DVDs were (and are) expensive and cumbersome. In 2005, they decided to redub the first two seasons which were originally dubbed edited and with a different cast (who they unceremoniously replaced with soundalikes starting from when Goku fights Burter and Jeice to save money), but the line was cancelled after 27 out of 67 episodes were released in favor of releasing "Season" box sets covering the entire series. On top of cropping the video to widescreen and degraining the picture into a blurry mess, they redubbed a portion of the dialogue for seasons 3 til the Cell Games to avoid the cast changes throughout the original run and removed all the voice filters such as Frieza's third form, who was originally meant to sound like a fusion between his first and second form and now just has the same voice as form 2 (read: Linda Young’s voice pitched down to sound masculine), and because they didn't have the finished tapes of the music, many episodes use the wrong music compared to the original broadcasts, if you're watching with the "Original USA broadcast" audio track on the DVDs... While many were pleased to see some of the worst performances in the original redone, many still have a fondness for the original,
  • Osamu Tezuka did that with Astro Boy and added whimsical introductions in which he discusses changes with Astro Boy.
  • Ghost in the Shell (1995) was released on DVD and Blu-ray in 2008 as Ghost in the Shell 2.0, with added CGI, modified scenes, and rearranged and re-recorded soundtrack and dialogue with a key character being voiced by another actor. The English dub of the movie retained the original voice track, but re-mixed the audio and replaced the sound effects.
  • Suzue Miuchi's Glass Mask is a very notable Manga example in Japan, the 24th volume is the final volume where the story and the Hana To Yume magazine issues are the same. They have different plotlines from volume 25 onwards from its magazine run. This also lead to longer hiatuses to both the serialization and the tankōbon releases. Volume 42 in 2004 is an entirely newly written story. This means that more than half of the story is made up of revision changes from Magazine to Volume. The amount of differences can add up to 10 volumes for the original Hana To Yume run assuming each volume is 180 pages.
  • The 1985-86 series Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam was turned into a 2005-06 movie trilogy called Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam: A New Translation, which mixed remastered and redone animation while also changing parts of the storyline.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz was originally released as a three-part OAV where some video releases had options of being linked together (skipping the opening and ending sequences) forming a near feature-length film. Several years later a new movie version was released for Gundam's 20th Anniversary that adds over 20 minutes of footage and key musical compositions rewritten. With the exception of a more elaborate and expanded "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue, all original footage is accounted for and the new footage is seamlessly integrated in between, fleshing out bits of the story along with more character pieces and extended action sequences. The new version has Dorothy make a cameo and factor into a major plot point while Heero's triumphant return to the battle is given a new scene showing his Heroic Resolve.
  • The original Mobile Suit Gundam movie trilogy was remastered for the 20th anniversary. Visually, nothing is changed. The surviving voice actors re-recorded their lines and several characters noticeably sound older than we remember them to be. The soundtrack was completely digitized but the futuristic gun sounds were replaced with more realistic sounding gunfire sound effects. The music for several scenes was either rearranged or more often removed in place of More Dakka and explosion sound effects. The "Soldiers of Sorrow" song, for example, was removed from the Battle of Jaburo and replaces the original somber ending credits song of the second movie. In the third movie, "The Beginning" (Lalah Sun's theme) wasn't heard in her first scene. And its use in the end credits was replaced by the more upbeat "Encounter". Very few fans are actually aware of these changes unless they were familiar with UC Gundam prior to the late Nineties so these changes have not met with much criticism from Western fans.
  • Revolutionary Girl Utena's remastered release featured some new animation touch-ups and some creative changes like adding bodies to the coffins shown in the Black Rose arc. The audio was also remixed with new sound effects (although the English audio was untouched).
  • Pokémon:
    • This was a side effect of the Porygon incident, as Pokémon had its first 37 episodes heavily altered to tone down bright light flashes. These alterations are notably different between Japanese and international releases (reportedly, 4Kids received several pre-Porygon tapes and were left to remove the flashing lights on their own.) Later, the first episode was remastered again, this time as a compromise between the pre-Porygon and post-Porygon versions, although this version was never released outside of Japan.
    • Pokémon: The First Movie has the kanzenban ("full version"), which adds CGI effects and a ten-minute prologue about Mewtwo's origin not in the Japanese theatrical version. The kanzenban (though initially without the prologue) was the version released internationally and in all subsequent TV airings and video releases.
  • When Azumanga Daioh was reprinted for its tenth anniversary in 2009, Kiyohiko Azuma made a number of modifications from the original release. Multiple strips were redrawn (especially in the first volume, which was rife with early installment character design differences) or otherwise touched up, new strips were added, and certain old ones were replaced. This version of the manga was only officially released in Japan, with Yen Press instead opting to re-release the original material when they grabbed the international rights that year.
  • The Sailor Moon manga was reprinted in 2003 to coincide with Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon. It featured updated artwork and dialogue, and the chapters were reorganized into fewer volumes. These reprints were later used for Kodansha USA's 2011 stateside retranslated rereleases.
    • They were revised and re-collected again in 2013 to coincide with the 20th Anniversary and Sailor Moon Crystal. These are Japanese-only, not being available in the US as of this writing.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica was tuned up for its Blu-ray release. Some changes were corrections (like making the size of soul gems consistent, etc), while others were more noticeable—such as making one of Sayaka's battles Bloodier and Gorier, and turning Mami's stark and lonely apartment into a cozy space full of plush toys.
  • There was a small one for the remastered Blu-Ray release of Macross: Do You Remember Love?, where two shots of decapitatons note  are blurred out.

    Comic Books 
  • This is fairly common with Archie Comics. They often reprint older stories, but owing to Values Dissonance they make edits ranging from removed / altered words to redrawn pages to entirely rewritten stories. One infamous story had Jughead lamenting women in the work force and being portrayed as in the right (the entire story was rewritten into an entirely different plot). Similarly, a That Wilkin Boy bit had Sampson fall for a scam where he, in effect, handed a couple hundred dollars to a thief posing as an FBI agent that ended on a page featuring the scammers celebrating that they got away with it — newer prints of the story feature a footnote of an embarrassed Sampson declaring the police had since caught the thieves and begging the reader not to tell Bingo or Sam. Even minor things like Ethel's name which was originally "Big Ethel": you'll often spot where a line of dialogue will have a big glaring space in front of "___ Ethel's" name where the unflattering moniker was removed.
  • Marvel Comics:
    • The Alan Moore and Alan Davis Captain Britain: A Crooked World run was printed in black and white for the UK, but colored when it was first reprinted for the international market. The subsequent Jamie Delano & Davis stories were first colored for a UK collection. Neither series has been available with its original black and white art since the changes were made.
    • The Incredible Hulk: Reprints of earlier stories would change the Hulk from gray to green, but this is no longer necessary as the gray Hulk form is now established in continuity.
    • Trade-paperback and omnibus collections may use digital coloring to make colors appear solid and brighter instead of washed out, and may appear differently than the original printed version. There may also be edits to infoboxes irrelevant to the story, such as referencing another issue or a notification of "to be continued".
    • Reprinted Dr. Droom stories renamed the character to Dr. Druid.
    • Earlier monster or horror stories framed with a generic narrator may be replaced with The Watcher or another Marvel-related narrator.
    • 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.
    • X-men Classics/Classic X-men would reprint stories but also add, edit, or replace entire pages.
    • The first two issues of 2022's Miracleman by Gaiman & Buckingham: The Silver Age were originally published by Eclipse Comics in the early 1990s (a third issue was also completed, but never published). For the 2022 Marvel version, Mark Buckingham completely redrew the artwork for those issues.
    • For a time, in Amazing Spider-Man #1, the part where Spider-Man calls the Chameleon a commie was changed to a more generic insult, in spite of the fact Chameleon was overtly recognized as being a Soviet spy.
  • The Killing Joke was recolored for the 20th-anniversary edition, making the scenes darker and more muted, in contrast to its original, more garish colors. One striking change is turning The Joker's tears red so it appears he's weeping blood. Another one is erasing the yellow oval from Batman's chest bat symbol, which had been there since the pencilled art, as the comics had by then swung back to having no oval as the standard.
  • The Absolute edition of The Sandman (1989) featured re-done colours (and for one issue, even completely re-inked linework) for some of the issues, which had been let down originally by time pressures or technical limitations.
  • Some Asterix comics have had their art reworked, often to deal with foreign markets. Perhaps the most obvious example occurs in Asterix in Switzerland, in which Asterix and Obelix get the wheel of their chariot repaired by a man resembling the Antar service station mascot. As Antar is not very well known outside of France, this was replaced with the Michelin Man in English editions.
  • Tintin: Author Hergé took a while to fully develop his signature ligne claire style, and by the early 1940s the earliest albums looked almost alien compared to the later books. As such, Hergé redrew almost every one of the earlier stories in colour, aside from the Old Shame of Tintin in the Land of the Soviets.
  • Some early Suske en Wiske albums were redrawn to remove some of the Early-Installment Weirdness, such as the radically different art style and some of the topical humor that was quickly phased out. When fans complained, further re-releases retained the original art with only a new coloring job—for the most part. While for some time, the first page claimed that the story was "reprinted with the original art from many years ago by popular demand," some stories would still have redrawn elements. On top of that, the stories that were redrawn in the first place have remained so, making the only way to see the original versions to collect the original printings or catch one of the limited edition "classic" reprints whenever they happen.
  • Grant Morrison was unhappy with one artist's work in the The Invisibles, so in the collected edition they had another artist redraw those pages. This is definitely a case of Tropes Are Not Bad: the pages in question are essential in explaining how time works in the Invisibles universe, but the original artist hadn't quite understood Morrison's script, whereas the replacement artist was much better at illustrating their ideas.
  • The Darkwing Duck comic book had the first 16 issues not only collected in an omnibus called "Darkwing Duck: The Definitively Dangerous Edition", but also had original editor Aaron Sparrow rewrite much of the stories to fix continuity errors and make it better fit the tone of the original show. Though most of the rewritten dialogue is better that the original, the fans complained about two things. First, one or two funny double entendres were removed; and second, the DuckTales crossover arc "Dangerous Currency" was not reprinted.note  Following this collection published by publisher Joe Books, Inc., a new ongoing Darkwing Duck comic will begin, naturally ignoring "Dangerous Currency".
  • The entire Scott Pilgrim comic book series got a full-color re-release in August 2012, which was supposed to coincide with the upcoming Downloadable Content for the Beat 'em Up adaptation of the series (that adds Wallace Wells as a playable character and online multiplayer) originally slated for an August 19th, 2012 release, until the DLC was pushed back until Fall of 2012.
  • Bone was colorized in graphic novel form, whereas its individual issues were black and white.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics) did this with issue #50 when it was re-released and heavily expanded in Sonic Super Special #6 - Sonic 50: Director's Cut
  • The EC Archives, a series of hardcover collections of series like Tales From The Crypt currently published by Dark Horse Comics, feature much sharper reproductions of the original linework than previous reprints and all-new digital coloring which subtly expands the color palette.
  • When Youngblood was reprinted in trade form in 2008, its colors were altered to be more consistent and less garish, and certain scenes were re-done in order to fix continuity errors that were present in the original versions.
  • In 2018, it was announced that Top Shelf would put out a new version of Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell's From Hell. The original was in black-and-white but the second version would be colorized by the original artist Eddie Campbell with Moore's consent. The plan is to colorize the trade paperback edition, publish it serially in chapters, with a new epilogue written and drawn by Moore and Campbell.
  • Neal Adams recolored his Batman issues for the 2010’s paperback editions.

    Comic Strips 
  • Gary Larson did this for The Far Side when its strips began to be reprinted in collections. Several of the earliest strips had half-finished art in the newspaper runs, which he would then fill in for the collections. He admitted to this in the collection The Pre-History of The Far Side, with an example shown — a bulls-eye rug mysteriously disappears halfway across the panel in the original run, while it's completely filled in for the collections. As Larson became better at cartooning, this became much less frequent. Several of the collections (particularly in The Far Side Gallery collections) also have colorized versions of the strips, which most fans don't seem to mind.
  • When Batton Lash's comic strip Supernatural Law was released in collected form, several early strips were redrawn to improve the quality of the artwork.
  • In its early days Doctor Who Magazine used to have backup strips presented by the Fourth Doctor as a sort of Horror Host. When the Auton story "Business as Usual" was reused as emergency filler in 1992, the opening image of Fourth was replaced by Seventh.

    Fan Works 
  • There Was Once an Avenger From Krypton: The version of The Girl Who Could Knock Out The Hulk released on Archive of Our Own in early 2020 is an updated, and at various points heavily rewritten, version of the one originally published on FanFiction.Net in late 2017. Word of God also states that the updated version on AO3 is the one canon to this universe, while the original is no longer canon; as of March 21, 2021, the FFN version has since been deleted and replaced with the AO3 version.
  • Forging a Better Future was intended to be this to Arrow: Rebirth, being a rewrite of Rebirth that would eventually spiral into its own series. It ended up replacing Rebirth entirely after it was determined that Rebirth had too many mistakes for the author to continue writing it.
  • Parodied in Enterprise 'Special Edition' Season 4 with fake bloopers, Deleted Scenes and CGI additions.
    Paramount has announced the release of a Special Collector's Edition DVD boxset (not related whatsoever to the Limited Release Special Extended Collector's Edition Star Wars DVD boxset) of Star Trek: Enterprise Season 4.

    Films — Animation 
  • Disney works:
    • Walt Disney's Fantasia was altered in its reissue to delete Uncle Tomfoolery. A digital alteration of the film appeared later, retaining the scenes, but simply deleting the blackface character Sunflower.
      • The entire soundtrack underwent a digital re-recording in 1982, with Irwin Kostal (the musical director of Mary Poppins, Bedknobs and Broomsticks, and Pete's Dragon (1977)) conducting new renditions of the music. However, the 1990 re-release used the original audio, as do all home video releases of the movie (save either shortened or redubbed versions of the mostly-lost interstitials).
    • Beauty and the Beast boasted some new animation, remixed audio and a new musical number based on a Cut Song from the film's early development (that was later reused to much acclaim in its Broadway adaptation) in its 2002 IMAX release. The visual changes and the new musical number made their way to every home video release that followed.
    • The Lion King had the same treatment as Beauty and the Beast in both its own 2002 IMAX release and every home video release that followed. It also had a new song from the film's Broadway adaptation, "The Morning Report", replacing the original pouncing lesson scene on the 2003 Platinum DVD release. Unlike with Beauty and the Beast, however, "The Morning Report" was later relegated to the Bonus Features on every home video release from 2010 onwards, while the original pouncing lesson scene was restored (albeit with the IMAX visual changes the rest of the film had still present).
    • Aladdin also received this treatment, but the low gross of the Beauty and the Beast and Lion King IMAX engagements compelled Disney to release this print directly to DVD.
    • When Winnie the Pooh and Christmas Too! was included in its entirety to pad out A Very Merry Pooh Year, the color of Rabbit's fur was changed from the pale green color it was in the New Adventures era, to the yellow color it had been before and after that. Edan Gross's voice for Christopher Robin was also dubbed over by his then-current actor William Green.
  • The DVD and Blu-ray versions of Incredibles 2 remove the strobe effect from most shots of the Screenslaver's hypnotic screens. This was most likely because these sequences faced criticism for being difficult on the eyes and potentially dangerous to epileptics while the film was in theaters.

    Films — Live-Action 

Trope Namer

  • George Lucas is hugely infamous for constant tweaking of his films after they're "finished", starting all the way back to a 1981 re-release of A New Hope where it got its current name (Star Wars: Episode IV: A New Hope), Star Wars was its original name and was eventually backpedaled into becoming the title of the franchise. He has said the reasons behind some of the changes were based on things they wanted to do but were unable to visualize with the budget or technology of the time, although some fans have misrepresented it as Lucas claiming every change was what he originally intended. A 2004 interview with Lucas has him explain his feelings on the subject:
    Lucas: The special edition, that's the one I wanted out there. The other movie, it’s on VHS, if anybody wants it. ... I'm not going to spend the, we're talking millions of dollars here, the money and the time to refurbish that, because to me, it doesn't really exist anymore. It's like this is the movie I wanted it to be, and I'm sorry you saw half a completed film and fell in love with it. But I want it to be the way I want it to be.
    • The 20th Anniversary (1997) re-releases to theaters were billed as having newly included scenes, an additional 5 million dollars was spent on the new features. There are actually dozens, if not hundreds, of little changes made, most of which fans were ambivalent about (most are seamless unless doing an actual frame-by-frame comparison). The most infamous one was Han shooting Greedo in the cantina after a tense standoff which was altered to have Han dodge a "warning shot" by Greedo and return fire; it changes Han from a Unscrupulous Hero into a Pragmatic Hero. This led to the internet meme of "Han Shot First!"
    • The subsequent 2004 DVD release of the original trilogy included new changes to better align with the prequels, including an image of Naboo in the "Nations of the World" Montage at the end of Return of the Jedi. In addition, some changes were made to fix the new Special Effects Failures that happened with the alteration, including a less Off-Model CG Jabba the Hutt in a scene added in the 20th anniversary, and improving the matte lines of the rancor. They even cleaned up the "Han Shot First" scene by making it more of a simultaneous action (it's rumored the change only took place because of differing standards with the ratings board and PG movies, PG-13 didn't exist at the time of the original). Another change that didn't get criticized was changing the original Emperor hologram from The Empire Strikes Back with one played by Ian McDiarmid, making sure Palpatine remains consistent through all films. Return of the Jedi featured the most controversial changes. Most notably having the unmasked Vader's face be digitally altered to make Sebastian Shaw resemble an older Hayden Christensen, and then replacing Shaw with Christensen as Anakin's ghost, which is the most hated change of all.
    • The 2011 Blu-Ray release also made a few changes, the most obvious being a different Krayt Dragon call from Obi-Wan in A New Hope and Darth Vader giving another Big "NO!" before killing the Emperor in Return of the Jedi.
    • A good deal of the enduring backlash comes with that Lucas has also been pretty apathetic about releasing the originals in their unaltered form. A limited DVD release was eventually issued around 2005, but rather than being a properly restored copy of the movies, it was a very poor-quality videotape master prepared for the 1995 Laserdisc release, making it a literally unaltered version of the trilogy (i.e. exactly what the unaltered version looked like on VHS and Laserdisc). It has been implied by interviews given by JJ Abrams that Lucas may have written it into the contract that sold Lucasfilm to Disney that the original unaltered trilogy will never receive a proper release, which only further compounds this issue.
    • The restorations and resulting transfers also suffer from Digital Destruction, with lost color depth and the like from turning the contrast knob way up and other inept use of settings. It's unlikely the original, already bold and colorful, palette will ever return. The limited DVD based on the laserdisc transfer is more faithful but still washed out and has plenty of compression artifacts on fast motion.
  • This not only applies to the original trilogy, but for home-version releases of the prequel trilogy as well. For instance, the Yoda in Episode I changing from a Puppet to a 3D Model when it went to Blu-Ray, since by that time they had worked with a CG Yoda for the two sequels.
  • Lucas made similar modifications to his first film, THX 1138, shooting new footage and using CGI to modify scenes by expanding crowds, settings and backgrounds and adding digital characters. Perhaps due to the fact this film lacked the iconic reputation of Star Wars, the changes weren't greeted with the same level of criticism, although fans were still upset that the original version of the film was permanently removed from circulation thereafter forcing a Keep Circulating the Tapes scenario involving earlier home video releases.
  • With the backlash of the re-edits of Star Wars and Steven Spielberg's similar changes to E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, when it came to releasing the Indiana Jones movies on DVD they announced they would not make any changes. This was, in part, due to the South Park episode (listed below) mocking and condemning the practice.
    • There is a minor edit in Raiders of the Lost Ark - when Indy falls into the cobra pit, in the theatrical cut it was extremely obvious that there was a pane of glass between Harrison Ford and the snake. The DVD version removes the reflection.
    • Some recent airings of Raiders of the Lost Ark alter the scene where Gobler's car falls down the cliff. In the original film, it's done using a model of the car and a matte painting of a cliff and as the car falls it doesn't cast a shadow against the cliff, but for the TV airing, they digitally replaced everything - the cliff which now looks different and the car which is now in sharper focus and casts a shadow. Bizarrely, this version of the scene is only used for the TV airings. It hasn't turned up on any of the DVD and Blu-Ray editions of the film (which do contain the altered snake pit scene to remove the cobra's reflection).
  • Not even American Graffiti was safe from this.
    • The first shot in the movie with Mel's Diner and the opening credits was given a digital sunset sky by Industrial Light & Magic in 1998 replacing the overcast sky featured in the original version of the film. This was the only change though.
    • Also, the 1978 reissue added two minutes of previously deleted scenes back into the film, and the soundtrack was remixed in Dolby Stereo. This is the version shown today.

Other movies

  • Dark Star was originally a 68-minute student short film. When it was acquired for distribution, new footage was added by the producer. Later, John Carpenter and Dan O'Bannon re-edited the film into a "director's cut", removing much of the footage shot for the theatrical release and adding new special effects.
  • Producer/cowriter John A. Russo decided to release a "30th Anniversary Edition" of Night of the Living Dead (1968), with no involvement from George A. Romero, the director and Russo's writing partner. The reissued version added a new score, newly filmed scenes, and altered sound effects. Harry Knowles threatened to ban anyone from Ain't It Cool News if they defended or complimented this version of the film.
  • Writer and producer William Peter Blatty produced a recut of The Exorcist, creating "The Version You've Never Seen". This version added some CGI fixes to certain scenes, added subliminal imagery, restored a scene where the possessed Regan carries out a contorted "spider-walk," and features a longer ending which sets up the events of The Exorcist III. In this case all the added footage had in fact been shot with the rest of the film back in 1973, but the director, William Friedkin simply didn't want to use it. Blatty did, and eventually got the chance to create his own edit.
  • Halloween:
    • Halloween (1978) has an alternate extended version with 12 minutes of additional scenes shot in 1981 for television during Halloween II's production. These scenes do little to advance the plot, and John Carpenter prefers viewers view the film without them, but they do tie some things together with the sequel, and some fans insist on watching the movie with them intact.
    • Halloween II (1981) also has an alternate version that was shown on television. Unlike the above example, this alternate cut was almost completely different from the theatrical version as it featured many bits of scenes added in or taken out, and many scenes were re-arranged, resulting in noticeably different pacing. It also arguably featured better character development. Unfortunately, this cut only exists with cable TV censorship, even as an extra feature on the DVD release. Also, a lot of fans objected to Universal's Blu-ray release that replaced the "Moustapha Akkad Presents" title card with "Universal, An MCA Company, Presents." This was apparently an accident, as the fans complained loud enough for Universal to fix this.
    • There was an alternate cut of Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1996) called the "Producer's Cut." It's technically the original cut of the film before the Weinsteins ordered re-shoots. It's often seen as superior to the theatrical version for having better character development and making more sense. It also was completed before Donald Pleasence's death, meaning his character originally survived the film. The theatrical version was completed after he died, and his character was killed off in that cut. This is also the version Daniel Farrands (the original screenwriter) prefers, although he admits he's not a big fan of either one. Despite fans' insistence, the Producers Cut was never been legally available on home video for years, with it only surviving through bootlegs. Fortunately, an official release finally happened on Blu-ray as a part of the complete franchise boxset from Anchor Bay and Shout! Factory struck from a print discovered in a vault in Canada. There's also a "Director's Cut" shown on television which is basically the theatrical version with some scenes from the Producer's Cut spliced in.
    • Both "Rob Zombie" films have theatrical and extended unrated director's cuts with alternate endings.
  • Steven Spielberg:
    • He was the first person to make a special edition, for Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Due to the original production running over time and budget, many scenes had to be cut from shooting. But due to the success of the film, Spielberg managed to convince Columbia to allow him to film these sequences (like the ship in the desert) and release a new version (called the Special Edition) in 1980. However, there was one gripe: He also had to shoot a new ending inside the spaceship (something Spielberg never wanted to show) and it was of course this part that the studio wanted to focus on. This version also had many scenes from the theatrical cut, but with new ones instead. Then in 1997, he released a Director's Cut: Essentially the 1977 cut (though with some scenes, like the power station and a scene with a pre-Rocky Carl Weathers as a soldier cut) with most of the new sequences (besides the inside of the spaceship of course) inserted. All three are included in the Blu-Ray.
    • E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial had quite a few for its 20th-anniversary release. In addition to a few new scenes with a CG E.T., it had a scene in which the FBI agents' shotguns were digitally replaced with Walkie-Talkies, which was particularly derided by fans. Lewis Black jibed that the FBI agents were using the Walkie-Talkies to ask each other, "Where the hell are our guns?!? We're trying to stop an alien from escaping!" Unlike Lucas, Spielberg later regretted the changes and now only the original 1982 version is available on Blu-Ray.
  • 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. Notably, many critics, including Roger Ebert, preferred the director's cut.
  • Happy Birthday to Me's original DVD release from Columbia featured a different musical score. This version was actually taken from an old workprint that had a temporary musical score. Anchor Bay's re-release featured the proper score, as does Mill Creek's Blu-ray.
  • Iron Monkey: The 2001 Miramax release replaces the soundtrack, sound effects, opening and closing credits, and has over 100 edits, including slowing down sped-up fights, and removing moments of violence and comedy from scenes.
  • The Return of the Living Dead has a version that altered the voice of the zombie who says "Send more paramedics!" The zombie had a shriller, higher voice in the earlier version of the film, and lower voice in the newer version of the film. The result isn't as funny as the original scene was.
  • There's a very bizarre DVD edition of Ulli Lommel's 1983 film Boogeyman 2. The original version of the film wasn't very good by any stretch of the imagination, but it is unanimously preferred over what Lommel claimed was a "Director's Cut". This version consists of cheaply shot footage of Lommel being interrogated by off-camera police officers, and "flashbacks" that are 90% derived from Lommel's 1980 film The Boogeyman, which Boogeyman II was a sequel to. The original version of Boogeyman II did consist of a lot of flashback footage from the first film, but it did have some new content, whereas the 2003 version of Boogeyman II is 90% footage from The Boogeyman, 10% newly filmed content. So fans of the original version of the film were not at all pleased by this version, invoking the George Lucas Altered Version trope.
  • The Charlie Chaplin classic film The Gold Rush was re-released by Chaplin himself in 1942 with some edits, instrumental music and replaced the title cards of the original silent film with his own narration. Thus making this Older Than Television. The original silent version of The Gold Rush was finally released on the Chaplin MK2 DVD, later on the Criterion Collection, being for a long time very obscure.
  • From the '80s until its first DVD release in 2005, the English-dubbed release of Danger: Diabolik suffered from this; the original track was presumed lost, and the recordings that existed were mixed with new voices of inferior quality; also, a reference to Robin Hood was removed, possibly in order to avoid the ire of Disney (who made an animated movie about the legend) or Warner Bros. (who had just come out with their own Robin Hood movie around the time the VHS and Laserdisc of Diabolik was released). It wasn't until 2005 that a DVD was released with the original English track as heard in theatres.
  • Towards the end of Titanic, a shot of the Milky Way in the night sky was rather lazily mirrored. Neil deGrasse Tyson pointed this out to James Cameron, who initially laughed him off but later enlisted him to provide an accurate star map. This change was made for the 2012 rereleases.
  • This happened to the 1979 version of Dracula starring Frank Langella as the Count. Since the Laserdisc edition in 1991, every home video release of the film has muted, desaturated colors to better reflect the original intent of the director, who wanted to film in black-and-white. The 2019 Blu-Ray release contains the desaturated cut on the first disc, and the original theatrical version on the second.
  • A unique version happens with the Richard Donner version of Superman II. The original movie was mostly directed by Richard Lester, who was hired to replace Donner after he was fired partway through. To prevent legal issues in the original, the movie had to be at least 51% Lester directed and that required refilming a lot of scenes and changing the script by adding in a lot of comedic elements (which Donner opposed and is the reason he was fired). Donner was given the opportunity to put together a new cut that represented his vision for the film, called "The Richard Donner Cut" instead of simply a Director's Cut. It ended up being about 75% Donner in theory, re-editing Lester-directed scenes to the best of their ability and with others they made do with limited rehearsal footage. They included some deleted fx scenes (including one where Superman is thrown into the Statue of Liberty Torch) and he reluctantly included a CG creation of Zod and company destroying the Washington Monument, which replaced the more comedic defacing of Mount Rushmore (but kept the same reaction line from the President).
    • Many of these limitations plus a treasure trove of others (the cheif one being Christopher Reeves not only being dead but in no condition to film new material even if he was still alive) means that the Donner Cut also had to use the very original ending for Superman II back when it was actually ''Part 2'' to the first films Part 1note  and not make an original ending.
  • Blade Runner was already famous for the number of Recuts: theatrical, workprint, Directors Cut and Final Cut, in large part due to the mystique surrounding Ridley Scott being removed in post production. The biggest change noticed was the removal of the Private Eye Monologue in all subsequent versions along with the forced Happy Ending, while the workprint and Director's Cut were not officially approved by Scott due to still being unfinished. The 25th Anniversary Final Cut, the only one Scott was involved with directly, fell under this trope as it fixed continuity errors, airbrushed revealing mistakes, added a few CG-assisted backdrops, adjusted the editing in key scenes and modified the color correction throughout. Unique to most examples of this trope, Ridley Scott made most of the previous, unaltered cuts of the movie readily available for anyone who wanted them in Blade Runner's boxsets on DVD, HD-DVD and Blu-ray.
  • Star Trek: The Motion Picture was originally released on DVD on a director's cut that re-edited the movie while adding some new CG effects by Foundation Imaging to get closer to Robert Wise's intended vision. (It is well known that Wise was unable to complete the film's effects to his satisfaction before its original release). Unlike what Lucas did with the Star Wars trilogy, the new CGI effects were made to closely resemble special effects in 1979 as opposed to souped-up modern-day visuals. Many found it an improvement to an overwhelmingly slow feature that became a bit more watchable, but given that Foundation went out of business one year after release, plus the cut bring produced in SD, it took over 20 years for an HD release of that version due to the MIA status of the CG archives necessary for a proper remastering. By 2021, the files were found, and a 4K remastered version of the director's cut was released the following year on Paramount+. (The DVD release also includes, for those who want to see them, all the trims removed from the Director's Edition version, plus footage from the extended TV edition.)
  • The original English-language version of The Good, the Bad and the Ugly was significantly edited down from the Italian version before the dub was recorded, and the removed scenes went un-translated for decades. It wasn't until 2002 that a special edition was created which returned the 14 minutes of missing footage, with newly-recorded English dialogue. However, as Lee Van Cleef had passed away, his character's lines had to be performed by Simon Prescott, and it's quite easy to tell that his voice isn't quite a match for Van Cleef's. Clint Eastwood and Eli Wallach were able to return to record their character's lines, but their voices were noticeably older and many found Prescott's lines a better match. Additionally, the entire movie's soundtrack was completely remixed and partially re-recorded, with several sound effects being noticeably altered, especially the gunshots. The DVD and Blu-ray also include a second audio track featuring the Italian dialogue and the original sound mix.
  • The Phantom of the Opera (1925) is an early and very mysterious example of a movie getting several alternate versions. The movie was originally released silent in 1925, but it was re-released with sound in 1930 to capitalize on the advent of "Talkies." About 60% of the movie was re-shot with sound (and with some changes to the cast), with the remaining silent footage just having new dialogue dubbed in. No film copies of the sound version exist (the soundtrack itself does, however), but there's another version of the movie called the Eastman House print, and nobody is really sure where it came from. It's silent, but some of the footage is obviously taken from the sound version, and the footage taken from the earlier silent version is slightly askew, suggesting it was shot from a secondary camera positioned to the side of the main one. There's also a scene that looks like it was shot for the 1930 version, but nothing that matches it can be found in the 1930 soundtrack. Home video releases offer several differing restored versions, one of which attempts to match up the soundtrack with the Eastman House print, ultimately making the situation even more confusing.
    • Some believe the Eastman House print was a silent edit of the 1930 version of the film made for overseas release or theaters not yet equipped for sound presentations.
  • The original CBS television edit of The Other changes the original Downer Ending with a voiceover where Niles tells Holland (his evil alternate personality that takes the form of his dead twin brother), that they can't play "the game" anymore, and that he'll ask the sheriff if they can play together in their new home when he comes to take them away for their crimes. This edit doesn't exist on any of the video releases.
  • Dracula (1931) was released so early into the era of sound films that it almost completely lacks a musical score; music can only be heard over the opening credits and when the characters themselves are listening to music. In 1998, Universal hired Philip Glass to compose a complete score for it, and the movie got a new VHS advertising the update. The DVD and Blu-ray releases give the viewer the option of viewing the film with the score turned on or off.
  • 3D re-releases of movies that were originally shot and shown in 2D have become the 2010s equivalent of colorization, though they tend to not attract as much controversy since there's little chance of the 3D versions ever replacing the originals. James Cameron kicked off the trend with Titanic, which lead to 3D conversions of other films such as The Phantom Menace, Jurassic Park, The Wizard of Oz, The Lion King, and Finding Nemo. Sometimes, as was the case with Jurassic Park, the CGI gets updated and elements like rain and debris get digitally beefed up to enhance the 3D effect.
  • There's a short film parodying this phenomenon, styled as a Mockumentary about digitally remastering all the audio for The Sting's DVD release. The lead audio engineer wildly misses the point—for example, he adds sci-fi sound effects to all the outdoor scenes (because he insists the movie isn't set in the 1930s, but in a far future that happens to look just like the 30s) and redubs Paul Newman with a campy lisp (because that's obviously how director George Roy Hill meant for the character to sound all along), and so on.
  • Deadpool 2, when it was released on DVD/Blu-Ray, came out with a "Le Super Duper Cut", which includes a longer version of Deadpool's madcap assault in the beginning and a post-credits scene where Deadpool hems and haws over if he should kill baby Adolf Hitler.
  • Stanley Kubrick also edited and altered his films between releases and for home video versions. The original version of 2001: A Space Odyssey was longer than the current version, and Kubrick himself cut down and removed the scenes. He did the same with The Shining sending out an order to projectionists that part of the ending be cut from the film during its first week in theatres, and then paring the film down further for its international release.
  • In the case of Spartacus which was directed by Kubrick and produced by Kirk Douglas, Kubrick had long since considered that a studio assignment. When the film was restored, Kubrick was consulted but generally let the restorers go about their business. They restored the original film with 14 minutes that were cut from the original scene, including a scene alluding to Crassus' bisexuality. Since Laurence Olivier had passed away, Anthony Hopkins voiced the character mimicking Olivier's voice in those deleted scenes. Kubrick approved the final version and addition of these scenes and this is the version of Spartacus available on home video.
  • David Lean's original cut for Lawrence of Arabia was nearly four hours long with intermission. This was screened at the premiere but was cut down to three hours for the general release. In The '80s, Lean collaborated on the restoration and revived his four-hour cut which had never been widely distributed theatrically. He got the surviving actors to redub dialogue despite being older than they were when they played the roles. This is the version subsequently re-released later, and is currently on home-video.
  • The French comic Jacques Tati for his film, M. Hulot's Holiday (made in the '50s) added an entire new gag spoofing Jaws which he put in for the re-release in the '70s.
  • Orson Welles himself was noted for making changes between previews and later versions. After the release of The Trial, he went back and removed an entire scene, and the film currently in circulation is this version. After the Executive Meddling of Touch of Evil, he wrote a memo detailing how he would like to salvage the film and this memo led to a new version in The '90s which created an entirely new version of the film, with altered scenes, some brought forward, others moved back, the opening credits removed entirely and moved to the end, and with a few inserts to suggest more nuance in character. Likewise, in The '60s and The '70s, Welles tried to attract studios for a plan to salvage The Magnificent Ambersons by shooting a few scenes with the surviving cast which, Welles argued, would seamlessly match the existing version but failed to attract interest.
  • In the 1970s Wade Williams reshot the special effects for the 1950s sci-fi movie Rocketship X-M in order to improve the film's visual continuity; the VHS tape, laserdisc, and DVD releases of RX-M incorporate this re-shot footage.
  • While Jurassic Park got an authentic transfer in the 2012 Ultimate Trilogy boxset, the version released in 2014 was rife with this. It featured a Blue and Orange Contrast colour grade, various odd sizing changes such as the size of Rexy's head and making Muldoon's thighs bigger, removing Rexy chomping on the head of a Gallimimus, or just cleaning up Jeff Goldblum's hair for a specific scene (not to mention heavy use of Digital Noise Removal, removing a lot of the finer details). On the other hand, various infamous goofs are fixed, such as a light in the back of a shot or the cables used to flip the Jeep in the T-Rex breakout scene.
  • Scarface (1983) received a new surround sound mix when the film was re-released in 2003, replacing almost all gunshot sounds with newer ones, removing music added inappropriately to certain scenes and making some of Tony's dialogue more audible in the climatic mansion massacre. From 2006 to 2011, this new mix was the only one used in all future releases of the film. The original mix would eventually resurface in the Blu-ray release, albeit in 2.0 stereo sound.
  • Gorilla, Interrupted was shot mostly in a week by a few amateur filmmakers in their early 20s with no budget and very little motivation to do things well. Over ten years later, some of the filmmakers had formed RedLetterMedia and decided to create a remastered version with better editing and effects. While they found that their terrible coverage at the time meant that they could make very few improvements in the Re-Cut, they did add some new visuals, such as making new UFO effects, turning the Jesus scene into a live-action sequence, and making a prop landscape for Hell. They bundled this version with a making-up documentary called How Not to Make a Movie and sold it on DVD.
  • Zack Snyder's Justice League is a different beast from the Re-Cut of other films of Zack Snyder. It isn't so much an extended version as it is a new film altogether (hence its own dedicated page). The theatrical film used very few untouched footage from what Snyder filmed (mostly action sequences), the rest was an amalgamation of altered Snyder footage (Darkseid — who was axed from the theatrical — was replaced by Steppenwolf in the ancient battle for instance) and footage Joss Whedon filmed on an executive mandate. The theatrical cut thus told a different story and scrapped numerous characters, subplots and backstories, in addition to added humor in Whedon's style and botched special effects due to the limited time to work on it back in 2017.
  • Mary Poppins got this for the 2004 40th Anniversary DVD edition. The film boasted an "Enhanced Home Theater Mix", which replaced nearly all the original sound effects with new ones to make the film sound more "modern" and "realistic," along with similarly sweetening the music in some areas. ABC Family also aired this version of the film from 2006 to 2012. This redubbed mix does not appear on subsequent DVD and Blu-Ray editions, however (and the original soundtrack was one of the sound options on the 2004 DVD.)
    • The German and European Spanish dubs from 1965 were not safe from this when being remixed from mono to the 5.1 surround sound, as only the "Enhanced Home Theater Mixes" are the ones still sold as of 2005.
  • Gleahan and the Knaves of Industry: Zig-Zagged. The "Director's Cut" (released in 2022) features entirely reworked sound, additional footage, and some new visual effects, among other tweaks. However, the entire cut is a full minute shorter than the original version.

  • When Ayn Rand wrote We The Living, she was not yet proficient at the English language, and she hadn't yet developed her philosophy, so when the book was reissued, she decided to rewrite several parts that were inconsistent with her philosophy.
  • For its 2013 re-release, Aaron Allston rewrote Doc Sidhe slightly to more closely match his current prose style.
  • As The Lord of the Rings was being written, Tolkien rewrote parts of The Hobbit to clean up bits of dialogue and plot holes that might have occurred when moving on with the sequel. Originally Gollum offered the One Ring to Bilbo freely, which doesn't work when you learned the Artifact of Doom is also an Artifact of Attraction.
  • Orson Scott Card changed a few parts of Ender's Game in later editions to show an impact of the end of the Cold War.
  • Talking to Dragons was written before the rest of Enchanted Forest Chronicles and underwent several changes to bring it in line with the rest of the books when it was rereleased after the other three. A summary of alterations is at The Other Wiki.
  • Charles Dickens altered Great Expectations after its original serial publication. Readers and fellow writers disagreed with what they saw as a Downer Ending where the hero Did Not Get the Girl. So Dickens wrote a new ending, which hints Maybe Ever After. Most reprints and publications use Dickens' changed ending and it often shows up in adaptations. The original ending is published separately.
  • Neil Gaiman has added bits to what many consider his magnum opus American Gods. Now with The Series being adapted in 2017, which has more stuff added to it by him, personally, it's left to be seen whether or not there'll be a renewed renewed version.
  • Henry James altered The Portrait of a Lady and many of his other books between original publication and later reprints. The so-called "New York Edition" was what he saw as his true version of the books. In most cases, his revision, at least for The Portrait of a Lady are subtle, and alter and shift nuance in key scenes, and many see this as improvements but others prefer the originals and different publishers reprint either versions with notes specifying which edition is which.
  • Terry Pratchett reissued his first novel The Carpet People because of public interest, but only after extensively rewriting it. He described the process as being a collaboration with his younger self, and he didn't have to give his co-writer any of the royalties.
  • The original US publication of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire altered a scene in the climax where a series of ghosts return in the descending order of their death. Unlike the UK Edition, where Harry's mother comes before his father, since she died before him, the US Edition, reversed it, with his Father coming second, implying, contrary to what was previously stated, that Harry's father was killed before his mother. Later reprints fixed this.
  • Stephen King massively rewrote the first book of The Dark Tower to bring it aesthetically in line with later books and clean up the odd Continuity Snarl. The fanbase is divided on this, as some of the Early-Installment Weirdness was part of the book's charm.
  • Bits of Judy Blume's FUDGE books from the 70s and 80s were updated in 2002 with then-current terminology. For instance, record players were replaced with CD players and mimeograph machines were replaced with photocopiers.
  • Gordon Korman had a set of the Macdonald Hall books reissued in the 1990s with updated technology terms and prices.
  • The early Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books were completely re-written beginning in 1959 in shorter, condensed form, with updated plots, faster-moving action, toned down violence, and whitewashing the characters. These "new" versions completely replaced the originals and remain in print to this day while diehard fans of the originals need to search for older printings of these books or track down facsimile copies from the early 90s.
  • Frankenstein was initially published anonymously in three volumes in 1818. In 1822, it was re-published in two volumes, this time attributed to Mary Shelley, but the text was unchanged. In 1831, the book was finally published in one volume, with a new introduction explaining how Shelley came up with the idea, and this time the text was heavily edited in order to make the story more conservative. The 1831 version is featured in nearly all modern editions of the book, unless they specifically say "1818 text" somewhere on the cover.
  • William S. Burroughs frequently revised his novels for new editions. Since his death, his literary executors have been slowly republishing his canon in new "restored text" editions with edited/censored material reinstated. So far this has included works such as Junky and Naked Lunch.
  • In 2008 they started reprinting books from the original Goosebumps series under the name Goosebumps Classic. Several books were altered to "update" them:
    • In Welcome to Dead House, each grave's birth and death dates were moved forward several years to make them more recent (why this makes it scarier is up for debate). Now, some characters were even born after the book was originally published.
    • In The Scarecrow Walks at Midnight, several things Mark brought with him to amuse himself at the farm are mentioned. The reprint changes "Walkman" to "iPod." This change is especially awkward, because it keeps a mention of his Game Boy in the very same sentence.
  • Reprints of Richard Scarry's Best Word Book Ever removed the gender role stereotypes (for example only a female was seen cooking in the kitchen, no females could be seen riding the firetruck, and a boy was riding a tricycle). Among the changes included adding a male into the kitchen, adding a female firefighter, and making the tricycle rider a girl.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The original Star Trek series has been reissued with CGI special effects that were obviously not an option during production in The '60s, replacing the original production models and matte paintings that were used at the time (though in the latter cases, mostly to make the planets more realistic and fix when the Alien Sky behind the characters doesn't look like the planet from the space scenes), along with a few more establishing shots that the original show often didn't have the budget to do. Some original music, most notably the opening theme, was also re-recorded. The general approach was an attempt to emulate what was already done with sharper visuals rather than spice up every scene with added details. The CG itself was never intended to be particularly crisp but the old vs new contrast is still there.
    • On the original HD-DVD release, only the "remastered" version was available at first, causing purists to accuse CBS Paramount of pulling a Lucas (made worse by the fact some minor editorial visual changes were made to some episodes as part of the remastering). However, subsequent Blu-ray releases have included the original versions, though not as the default option: you have to change from the "remastered" versions to watch them. CBS Paramount has also been doing their best to show only the "remastered" versions in syndication, at least in certain markets.
  • The Star Trek: The Next Generation Blu-ray release also updated the special effects in certain places, where showing the original in hi-def would only make them look worse. Unique for this trope is many people actually applaud the work, saying it breathes new life into the show by making it feel recent and not forcing you to enjoy it as a relic of the past. The key difference between the TNG and TOS remasters is that for TNG, CBS had an almost-entirely complete archive of the well-preserved original film to work from, and there were very few scenes that required all-new effects work (most notably the all-CGI crystalline entity from "Datalore" and "Silicon Avatar", which had to be recreated from scratch), and there were no redesigns or "editorial changes" involved (as was the case with the planets and other effects in TOS).
  • A number of stories from Doctor Who's classic 1963-1989 run have been subject to this on the show's home video releases:
    • A few DVD releases, including "The Dalek Invasion of Earth" and "The Ark in Space", have had new special effect sequences inserted, better than what was available with the technology (and budget) of the time. However, in all cases, the original broadcast version is also included and the viewer can choose if they want to watch the original or the 'improved' version. An especially heavily altered case is "Day of the Daleks (Special Edition)" which replaces the effects with slightly jarring 00s CGI and some Retraux practical effects, adds additional Daleks to fill out invasion scenes which used only two wobbly props, edits out some of the worst Special Effect Failures and acting SNAFUs, and redubs the Daleks with Nicholas Briggs. Another special edition was "Planet of Fire", which included the addition of some new scenes; once again, however, the original version was released alongside.
    • "Enlightenment" and "The Curse of Fenric" both have "Movie-style" editions on their respective releases, editing the episodes into one continuing feature-length episode, both reordering some scenes for better narrative flow and updating some effects. "Fenric" also features colour regrading to mask inconsistent weather conditions during the shoot, while "Enlightenment" has been given a 16:9 aspect ratio.
      • "Enlightenment's" special edition was supervised by the director of the original serial.
    • For its first DVD release, the 20th anniversary special, "The Five Doctors" was issued in a revised edition with newly made special effects and other changes. The new version was heavily criticized by fans and for a time was the only version available in the format. Later, the original version of "The Five Doctors" was issued in a new edition alongside the remastered version, allowing viewers a choice. note 
    • The BBC repeated this again in 2019 when they released the The Collection: Season 18 Blu-ray box set. Tom Baker's swansong episode, "Logopolis", now has an optional alternate cut with updated special effects, the replacement of the model footage of the radio telescope in motion in Part 4 with live-action footage of the telescope at Jodrell Bank, and an additional scene where, after watching his hand slip away from the strut as we do in the original, we see the Fourth Doctor plunge to his death.
    • The Collection: Season 23, comprising the Trial of a Time Lord season, goes a step further by offering a complete alternate "Special Edition" cut of "Terror of the Vervoids", with all of the Trial story arc's courtroom scenes removed, new CGI effects, and an entirely new title sequence that combines the style of the Sixth Doctor's sequence with the styles used in the modern show. To offer a bit of further context, the season proper involves the Doctor being put on trial and shown segments of his life from his past and future, with "Vervoids" being the story from the future, and part of the plot is hints that the story is being selectively manipulated in order to frame the Doctor. The joke, then, is that this edit is the version of the story from the unseen season that it was supposedly taken from, and the viewer is finally seeing what actually happened.
    • The original 1985 broadcast of the short "A Fix with Sontarans" became a Banned Episode for guest-starring Jimmy Savile, who has been posthumously outed as Britain's most monstrous sexual predator and completely unpersoned from British society since. The Collection: Season 22 brings in an unbanned version, replacing Savile's appearance with a Bolivian Army Ending of a Sontaran fleet closing in on the TARDIS via a new CGI shot and Colin Baker recording a new closing line of dialogue.
    • A bit of Fleetwood Mac's "Oh Well, Part 2" appeared on the soundtrack of Jon Pertwee's debut story "Spearhead from Space" on first broadcast (the Stock Footage workers in the plastics factory seem to be listening to Radio 1), but the rights were secured only for original transmission and the song was removed for rebroadcasts, exports, and home video release. The version as broadcast no longer exists.
  • The first three series of Red Dwarf (from 1988 and 1989) were released as "Remastered" editions intended for overseas sales in 1998. The changes included most of the model shots being replaced with CGInote , a film effect being applied (despite the decade-old series obviously not being filmed or lit for it), a fake "widescreen" effect by cropping the picture, trimming some scenes whilst extending or replacing others and adding other new music and special effects.
    • The DVD release of Red Dwarf VII includes the made-for-VHS "Red Dwarf Xtended" releases of "Tikka To Ride", "Ouroboros" and "Duct Soup", featuring material that had to be cut for time, but lacks an audience track due to this season having not been filmed with one. "Tikka" is also given an option to watch the episode with much higher quality CGI shots of Starbug, replacing the rushed and almost-cartoony original attempts.note 
  • Babylon 5:
    • When the show was picked up for a fifth season by TNT, the pilot TV Movie was reworked considerably, including redoing some effects shots, replacing the soundtrack, and dealing with various editing and pacing issues. The redone version was subtitled as the "Special Edition", and aired just prior to the show's fifth season.
    • The series as a whole was shot widescreen "safe" in anticipation of the shift to widescreen TV, so it could be cropped to 4:3 fullscreen for the initial airing but converted to 16:9 widescreen for later re-releases. However, the CGI special effects were only ever rendered in 4:3. When the series was converted to widescreen any scenes with CGI had their top and bottoms cropped to mimic the widescreen look of the live-action footage, and was stretched to fill the screen. Fans hoped for an update to the special effects, but the cost and labor was prohibitive. The series finally received a remaster in 2020, but instead of re-doing the CGI for widescreen they restored the original 4:3 aspect ratio and upscaled the original CGI.
  • Some episodes of Lost were altered for their first re-airing, which is the version on DVD. For instance, "Adrift" added a shot of the World Trade Center towers to better establish the time frame of the flashbacks. Another episode removed a white car that was visible in the background during a scene on the Island.
  • An updated version of the original Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers aired in 2010 on ABC Kids with updated special effects and comic book-inspired graphics.
  • It is commonplace for TV series to be released to home video with some music either edited out or replaced by other recordings, due to licensing issues. Examples include Married... with Children, which replaced its opening song by Frank Sinatra with a generic piece of music, and WKRP in Cincinnati, which had so much of the original music removed on its initial DVD release that critics asked what was the point of releasing it in the first place. In some cases (such as MWC and WKRP), later reissues have had some or all music restored. In extreme cases, some TV series releases have had to omit entire episodes due to insurmountable rights issues. In a case of No Export for You, North American releases of some Doctor Who episodes have had to have recordings by The Beatles removed from the soundtrack (i.e. "The Chase" and "Remembrance of the Daleks"); UK releases, however, are unaltered. (More examples under Screwed by the Lawyers.)

  • This is often done with remixes in pop/hip-hop/r'n'b music, where the original artist gets other artists to perform new parts of their hit single on the track's original beat.
    • Jay-Z is a notable subversion, as his remixes generally involve the track getting a new beat, and very rarely do guest MCs perform. An exception for Jigga was "30 Something (Remix)", which featured Ice Cube and Andre 3000.
    • Rihanna did this on her Unapologetic album with the tracks "Diamonds" and "Pour It Up". "Diamonds (Remix)" had Kanye West lay a verse on it (coincidentally, Kanye also has a song called "Diamonds" in his own right), whilst "Pour It Up (Remix)" had a star-studded remix involving four guest rappers (Young Jeezy, Rick Ross, Juicy J and T.I.). The latter is notable in part because Ross and Jeezy were on the same track (most likely because of Money, Dear Boy), despite both being enemies at the time.
  • When Frank Zappa started reissuing his catalog on compact disc, he decided to completely revamp many of his albums. In particular, entries like We're Only in It for the Money, Cruising with Ruben & the Jets and Hot Rats were completely different from their original vinyl incarnations. Zappa added newly recorded instrumentation to Money, Jets and a few other albums, like Sleep Dirt (originally an instrumental album, the CD featured newly recorded vocals by Thana Harris, with lyrics derived from the unproduced musical Hunchentoot, where many of that album's songs originated), which featured newly recorded drumming and bass guitar tracks by then-current musicians like Chad Wackerman and Arthur Barrow. Reportedly, the new instrumentation on these albums was because many of the original band members on the recordings, including drummer Jimmy Carl Black, were suing him over unpaid royalties. Hot Rats did not feature any new instrumentation, being that all of the material was recorded at the original sessions, however, the original recordings were sequenced, mixed and edited in a way that made the exact same recordings sound drastically different from the original album. All of the original vinyl mixes were eventually rereleased after Zappa's death, though Freak Out!, Ruben & the Jets and Zappa in New York still feature the remixed versions on their standard releases.
  • Jimi Hendrix was working on an album at the time of his death, to be titled First Rays of the New Rising Sun. It was never completed as intended, due to his death. The recordings were subsequently scattered across several different contractual obligation albums released by his label, with various alterations made after his death to complete the unfinished recordings. Producer Allan Douglas decided to alter these recordings further by releasing Voodoo Soup, which Douglas alleged presented the album as Hendrix would have intended, which is subjectively untrue, as there was no telling as to how Hendrix would have completed the album if he had lived. One of Douglas' alterations was to add newly recorded drum tracks played by Bruce Gary, of The Knack, a band that formed in 1978, several years after Hendrix died. After the Hendrix family gained the rights to his compositions and purchased the master tapes for his recordings, Voodoo Soup was pulled off the market and replaced by First Rays of the New Rising Sun, a purist-friendly reconstruction of the unfinished Hendrix album, which presented the songs in the versions that were mostly complete by the time of Hendrix' death, plus minimal overdubs in accordance with Hendrix's wishes (the vibraphone on "Drifting"), compiled and sequenced by Eddie Kramer and Mitch Mitchell.
  • In 2002, Ozzy Osbourne decided to reissue Blizzard of Oz and Diary of a Madman with the original drum and bass tracks replaced with new recordings from Robert Trujillo and Mike Bordin. This was because his original drummer and bassist Bob Daisley and Lee Kerslake had sued him in 1986 for royalties for the two albums. Fans were outraged and music critics derided the reissues. Ozzy later changed his mind about these reissues and had the original albums reissued in remastered versions in 2011, restoring all of the original instrumentation, causing much rejoicing among Ozzy's fans.
  • On the Geto Boys' Self-Titled Album, "Gangsta of Love" was originally built around a sample of the Steve Miller Band's "The Joker". However, the sample was not properly cleared, and it was subsequently replaced with a remixed version that instead samples Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama". The remixed version isn't as effective.
  • In 1996, guitarist Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath fame made some solo recordings featuring the drum work of Dave Holland, formerly of Judas Priest, but didn't consider them fit to release at the time (it was subsequently bootlegged). When Iommi was finally convinced to release the EP, Holland had been convicted of attempted rape, and Iommi decided to have his drumming re-recorded, as he did not want the album to be associated with a sex offender. The 2004 EP release The 1996 DEP Sessions therefore consists of 1996 recordings with 2004 drums (played this time by Jimmy Copley).
  • Dark Lotus' Tales from the Lotus Pod was altered to remove the vocals of former member Marz. Violent J explained that he wasn't satisfied with the album as it was originally released, as he found Marz' raps to be too dark and morbid. Thus, it was reissued with newly recorded vocals by Psychopathic Records artist Anybody Killa.
  • In 1970, on the precipice of the band's break-up, The Beatles released their 12th studio album Let It Be, essentially cobbled together by producer Phil Spector from various studio recordings and out-takes. In 2003, Paul McCartney would release Let It Be... Naked, a remixed version of the album that stripped out Phil Spector's choral and orchestral overdubs (which were probably necessary at the time to salvage parts of the material), and digitally cleaning tracks using technology not available at the time. Unlike most iterations of this trope, both versions remained readily available.
  • Dave Mustaine uses this as much as George Lucas with Megadeth's catalogue:
    • As part of an agreement to get out of his contract, Mustaine ended up "remastering" all of Megadeth's catalogue at Capitol Records (basically all their albums up to Risk minus the first one.) However, his idea of remastering involved creating completely new mixes of everything. The result is interesting, but fans still overwhelmingly prefer the original versions, especially as some of the master recordings were supposedly lost and had to be re-recorded. Rust in Peace in particular had missing vocal masters, meaning either alternate takes or new ones by 2004 Mustaine (which clash quite a bit with himself more than a decade prior).
    • Mustaine also completely reworked MD.45's album The Craving, removing the input of Lee Ving (vocals and harmonica) entirely, and adding his own vocals and extra guitar. Mustaine initially claimed that Ving's parts were lost, but later said that he did it because he was disappointed in the failure of the original version, and thus effectively made it a Megadeth album.
    • Mustaine also provided totally different covers for Killing Is My Business and Risk (in the former's case, to his relief, as the band was appalled at how cheap the original was and the illustration is closer to Mustaine's original sketch), a modified one for Cryptic Writings, and changed the color saturation and logo sizes on the others.
  • David Sylvian finally released the Japan outtake "Some Kind Of Fool" on his 2002 collection Everything And Nothing...but added new vocals to the original instrumental. Whilst Sylvian's singing had definitely improved, the vocals were incongruous with the older music. He did similar versions of Ghosts and solo track Brilliant Trees, the former also on Everything And Nothing, and the latter on a limited 3CD edition of it.
  • In 2009, Kraftwerk released remastered versions of all their albums, save their first three which they've more or less disowned. Among other changes, the album Electric Cafe was changed to Techno Pop (its' original working title), and the cover of Trans Europe Express was changed to a simple train logo rather than a portrait of the four band members (possibly because two of them had long since split from the band, and not exactly on good terms either).
  • Cirque du Soleil did this with the Saltimbanco soundtrack in 2005 — along with adding two songs that hadn't appeared on the original 1992 album, all of the original release's songs either had re-recorded portions or were new recordings, reflecting the significant changes made to the show's orchestrations over the years to sound less like products of The '90s.
  • For his 1998 career-spanning Boxed Set Tip of the Freberg, Stan Freberg decided to add some newly recorded material to the archived recordings on there. In one case, he re-recorded some lines cut from the original release of the 1954 Joseph McCarthy satire "Point of Order". In other cases, he did new re-creations of radio commercials he'd written and voiced back in The '60s. There was one big problem with this: Freberg was in his 70s and had a much deeper and throatier voice than in his younger days, so it was blatantly obvious where the 1998 material got shoved into the older recordings.
  • A rather unusual example occurred with Days of Future Passed by The Moody Blues; in 1972, it was discovered that the master tapes for the album had deteriorated to such an extent that only the essential parts of each track survived. As a result, the album was heavily remixed for all reissues from 1978 to 2016. The original 1967 mix was eventually recovered and digitally transferred in 2017, just in time for a 50th-anniversary reissue on CD, DVD, and LP.
  • When John Fahey's 1959 debut Blind Joe Death was reissued in 1964, a few songs were re-recorded. In 1967, he re-recorded the album almost entirely, and did the same with its 1963 followup Death Marches, Breakdowns & Military Waltzes. In the case of the first reissue of Blind Joe Death, this was done because he felt he'd become a much better guitarist in the five years since its release. In the case the Death Marches reissue and the second Blind Joe Death reissue, it was for the same reasons, but also in order to reissue the recordings in stereo. 1999 reissues of both albums consist of the original recordings followed by the re-recordings.
  • Two years after David Bowie's death, Parlophone announced a complete revamping of his much-panned 1987 album Never Let Me Down. Dubbed Never Let Me Down 2018, it featured completely new backing tracks produced by Mario J. McNulty, who previously produced a similar remix of "Time Will Crawl" for Bowie's 2008 iSelect compilation album. The new version features a much more organic sound than the original 1987 version, lacking the heavy synthesizer work that marked the original album's perceived overproduction. The remix was released on October 12, 2018, exclusively as part of the Boxed Set Loving The Alien (1983-1988); a digital release of the remixed version of "Zeroes" was released the previous July, with a physical 7" release containing an edited "Beat of Your Drum" as a B-side released in September.
  • Lawrence made several alterations to half of the Felt catalog when all their albums were remastered in 2018. One album in particular, Ignite the Seven Cannons, was remixed in its entirety due to Lawrence being highly critical of producer Robin Guthrie's original mix, whilst another, Let the Snakes Crinkle Their Heads to Death, was re-released under its original working title The Seventeenth Century. Martin Duffy's lengthy instrumentals on The Pictorial Jackson Review were also dropped in favour of two unreleased recordings, "Jewels are Set in Crowns" and "Tuesday's Secret".
  • In 2012, a "special edition" of Freddie Mercury's Barcelona was released, with the synth orchestra replaced by an actual one. In 2019, it was followed up by a version of Mr. Bad Guy with a clearer sound, autotuned vocalsnote  and all bass parts re-recorded by Neil Fairclough, a studio musician touring with Queen (similar to the infamous "Force ghost scene" alteration). In a classic twist on this trope, these are the only versions that can be found on streaming services, but some of the original versions can be found in other compilations.
  • The original version of After the Burial's 2008 release Rareform featured vocal tracks from then-vocalist Grant Luoma, but after Luoma was fired later that year due to his many instances of Alcohol-Induced Idiocy and aggressive and violent behavior while drunk, the band got his replacement Anthony Notarmaso to redo the vocal tracks and rereleased Rareform with Notarmaso's tracks in 2009.
  • Genesis's catalogue was almost entirely remixed in 2007 by Nick Davis, with the intention that the original mixes would "disappear" from future releases (despite this intention, many of the original mixes are still available on streaming services, at least in the United States, and a few original mixes were used on the 2016 compilation R-Kive as well). Reception to these new mixes has not been very positive, mainly because the CD and digital releases were victims of the Loudness War.
  • Propaganda's A Secret Wish was radically reconfigured by producer Stephen Lipson for its CD release. The B-side "Frozen Faces" is added between "Duel" and "p:Machinery", "Dream Within a Dream" is extended, the album versions of "Jewel" and "p:Machinery" are replaced with the 12" and 7" versions, respectively, and both "Duel" and "Dr. Mabuse" are remixed, with the latter being mashed up with "The Last Word/Strength to Dream" (the CD mix of "Dr. Mabuse" is moved to the end of the album because of this). While later reissues would restore the LP version (with some including "Frozen Faces" and the remixed "Duel"), Lipson considers the remix the definitive version.

  • Cymbeline:
    • The play was significantly rewritten by Thomas D'Urfey when he revived it in 1682, almost fifty years after Shakespeare's version was last performed. The servant Pisanio gets a new subplot, and is blinded by villain Cloten after he kills one of Cloten's servants who's menacing his daughter. Several key characters are renamed: Posthumus becomes Ursaces, Imogen becomes Eugenia and the Italian villain Iachimo becomes the French scoundrel Shatillon. D'Urfey also significantly rewrote the last two acts, removed Zeus and the prophecy, and renamed the play The Injured Princess, effectively hiding Shakespeare's identity as the playwright. D'Urfey's version became the default for the next fifty years, with a revival in 1718 giving it a new lease of life. The original version of Cymbeline eventually returned to theatres in 1746.
    • Actor and theatre manager David Garrick revived the play in 1761 with his own significant changes. The text was significantly cut, with 500 lines reportedly removed from the final act alone. Visions and gods were omitted, in the belief that Garrick's audience didn't want those supernatural elements, and scenes were restructured to fill the gaps this created. The new version became part of Garrick's standard repertoire for the rest of his career, with over a hundred performances spanning fifteen years. The changes didn't endure for too long after his retirement, though.

    Video Games 
  • In addition to dramatic across-the-board graphical improvements, Super Mario All-Stars also made a number of small edits to the NES games, usually to eliminate the possibility of glitches, bugs, accidental dead ends, and the like that were present in the original games. For Super Mario Bros. 3, this often involved small adjustments to the placement of pipes and blocks.
  • Following the extremely negative response to the original ending/s of Mass Effect 3, BioWare spent several months working on an improved version, including the creation of many new cutscenes and the recording of new dialogue as well as some minor retcons to the original story. It isn't a new ending, rather the scenes expand it to help it feel more fleshed out and satisfying. This would become available to download as a free DLC called the 'Extended Cut' several months later, which would replace the original ending if installed (and in the case of the Wii U port and the Legendary Edition, is the only ending since it's installed by default), and is thought considerably better by most fans. Still not quite the ending that they wanted in many cases, but certainly better than what they had before.
    • The Mass Effect Legendary Edition also counts, being an Updated Re-release that goes above and beyond most Remasters. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the original Mass Effect: since it aged the most, it's the most different, with the lighting of many levels being completely overhauled, and many assets were replaced with the higher-quality versions that appeared in the later games, like the scientist uniforms and Elcor assets, and the sound effects of weapons and the Mako hemming closer to the later games. Many surface textures were also added to costumes, like carbon fiber weave and other patterns. The net result is that while Mass Effect 1 now fits in a lot better with its sequels, some fans are disgruntled that the art style was altered so significantly and prefer the look of the originals. The saving grace for them is that the Legendary Edition is a separate product that doesn't replace the originals when buying them online.
  • For the Orange Box, Valve Software enhanced Half-Life 2 with re-done HDR-compliant lighting in all the maps as well as replacing the named NPCs' original character models with the more recent ones made for Episode One. In 2010, they finally got around to pushing this as an update to the PC version, but introducing a few bugs in the process that never got fixed, such as the lighting breaking in some spots if HDR isn't enabled.
    • More blatantly, in 2010, they patched Portal to, after the game is beaten once, add hidden radios in every chamber that have to be brought to a certain spot to pick up an encrypted signal; getting them all unlocks a new achievement, "Transmission Received". A further update added a new ending where Chell doesn't escape the facility after all, but gets dragged back in by a mostly-unseen Aperture robot. These changes received surprisingly little outrage, as they ended up being the start of an ARG that ultimately teased a sequel.
  • Every port of Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake since the 2004 mobile phone version had all the character portraits replaced. The original MSX2 game featured photo-realistic portraits that were obviously traced from real-life individuals at the time. The later versions replaced these with more stylized depictions patterned after Yoji Shinkawa's art style from Metal Gear Solid, most likely done to avoid any potential likeness infringement issues.
  • The Anniversary edition of Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo 2 take one step beyond a normal Updated Re-release, aiming for a Shot for Shot Remake but included updated cutscenes (Halo CE was still done in-engine with the newer graphics, while Halo 2 was rendered in feature quality CG), and Easter Eggs were included that hinted towards upcoming games. But, most notably, they included a unique feature allowing players to toggle seamlessly between the original graphics and the update.
  • Conker's Bad Fur Day got one on the Xbox in 2005, titled Conker: Live and Reloaded, with improved graphics and sound and a few gameplay tweaks. However, many fans disliked the other changes made to that version, such as censoring out more swear words and arbitrarily changing the glass of milk which Conker holds in the opening and ending scenes into a gobletnote . As a result, Rare Replay featured an emulation of the original N64 release instead of the Xbox version.
  • Devil May Cry had this happen a few times:
    • DMC3 had to be re-released in America as a mistake resulted in its normal mode being the Japanese hard mode.
    • DMC4 got a few new scenes added in at the beginning and end for its re-release on the PS4 and Xbox One.
    • The reboot DmC: Devil May Cry actually had some scenes removed for the Updated Re-release on the PS4 and Xbox One in order to resolve some pacing issues that reviewers and fans criticized the game for.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask both had this when re-released on the Nintendo 3DS. Both had improved visuals and a hint system, especially the latter, which was evident in the start of the game when the bank moves from West Clock Town to South Clock Town, Link can get the Bomber's Notebook without even going through the Bomber's quest, and even saving is much easier in that no longer do you wait for a sword and can do it even as Deku Link.
  • To avoid triggering epileptics, all ports and rereleases of Zelda II: The Adventure of Link remove the rapid flickering effect seen in the NES original when certain spells are cast, bosses are defeated, or Link is killed, and replace it with a single solid color.
  • Ori and the Blind Forest was re-released as the Definitive Edition, which, in addition to removing the controversial Point of No Return at the Very Definitely Final Dungeon entrance and allowing the player to revisit previously cleared dungeons, adds a new Bonus Dungeon area that reveals the backstory of Naru and grants Ori two new Ancestral Tree skills that unlock additional secrets, and makes the Spirit Wells into warp points.
  • Fallout series
    • The PC version of Fallout: New Vegas, in response to Bethesda prematurely ending bug fixes so as not to overshadow The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, received a Game Mod from project director J.E. Sawyer that fixed the previously unpatched bugs and rebalanced the game's difficulty, making such changes as the Courier's Stash items being hidden throughout the Wasteland instead of being available at the start, the Courier's base carrying capacity being smaller, armor being lighter but more durable and effective thanks to Damage Resistance coming back, Stimpaks and a few other healing items being nerfed, and penalties for hunger, thirst, and sleep deprivation in Hardcore Mode accruing faster.
    • Fallout 4, as of patch 1.5, had its Survival Mode, which originally just made the enemies into damage sponges, made the Sole Survivor super-vulnerable to damage, and increased healing times, completely overhauled to include all of FNV's J.E. Sawyer Hardcore Mode attributes, plus Illnesses that require Antibiotics to remedy, buffed attack lethality for both the player and enemies, Adrenaline that increases the player's damage bonuses with consecutive kills but resets to zero when the Surivivor sleeps, Fast Travel other than teleporting to the Institute (and from there to the CIT Ruins) being disabled, and saves being limited to beds.
  • Post-2013 releases of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City and updates for Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Grand Theft Auto IV and the latter's expansions approximately ten years after each game's original release removed a number of pieces of licensed music from the in-game radio stations, due to licenses expiring. Vladivostok FM from GTA IV was the most harshly affected, as almost the entire station had to be replaced. Opinion regarding the new station tends to be on the negative side.
  • Jynx might be the only Pokémon to have suffered from this. Originally they had black skin, but after the "Jynx is racist-looking" controversy that followed the US airing of "Holiday Hi-Jynx" it was permanently changed to purple skin by the time Ruby and Sapphire had come out. All reissues of games originally released before the change have since followed suit. Also, said anime episode was removed from rotation since 2013, alongside two others due to the American office's attempt to move the series to streaming services, with worries over kids discovering that Jynx used to look "different". However, the PokeRap feature was ignored so Jynx's original black skin may still be there if you look closely.
  • Warcraft III: Reforged altered the appearance of many creatures, characters, and buildings to match them up to World of Warcraft's established aesthetic. Most campaign heroes were given unique models instead of just using existing units. Some locations, like Stratholme, also have a new layout to match WoW. The previously cut final few missions of the Exodus of the Horde campaign (which explains how the Darkspear trolls joined the Horde) are also fully restored, with finished cutscenes and voice acting.

    Web Animation 
  • Cartoon Monsoon: Go Go Moba Boy had a 2004 extended cut with improved animation and audio quality, a theme song, 3 extra minutes of footage and Roxinaou and Strack's dialogue were dubbed over by Grey DeLisle and Daran Norris, respectively.
  • One Ring to Rule Them All: Special Edition: The behind-the-scenes making-of featurette "Forging The One Ring" discusses this concept.
    Joey: I always felt that the first movie
    never really quite fit in with later installments of the series.
    So I decided to redo everything.
    Voices, graphics, jokes...
    And replace all the Rings with walkie talkies
    And add AT-AT Walkers to the background
    Dustin: In other words... he pulled a George Lucas.
    (Stamped across the screen in red letters: IT'S BETTER!)

    Web Comics 
  • Darths & Droids references this trope at the end of the A New Hope adaptation. Corey wants to replay the game as Darth Vader, but the GM refuses and Annie insists that "The original version is always the best."
  • Most, if not all, pages of chapter one of Escape from Abject Reality were altered on DeviantArt to change some shading and remove the "SILICA" label from Silica's design.
  • The author of the Webcomic Funny Farm decided to release the series again, one strip at a time, but redrawn in his current art style and with a spoileriffic commentary on each strip.

    Web Videos 
  • The Angry Video Game Nerd, much like in South Park, decided to get in on the fun of mocking this practice in his Back to the Future Trilogy. He starts out by claiming he always wanted random dance scenes and effects in his videos but couldn't afford them, then claims he is changing his Friday the 13th video so that Jason shoots first, but later says he was joking and has no intention in doing this, but he claims he could have done the games better justice and decides to review some games he already reviewed again. That said, he has changed certain parts of his older videos when re-uploading them to YouTube, though this is more because they got copyright struck by the algorithm than any actual desire for change.
    • Parodied in his Masters of Thera Khasi video, where he mocks this trope by "Obtaining" an edited version of the game which added changes such as including characters from the Sequels and changing the voices of certain characters.
  • When Red vs. Blue came out on DVD, Rooster Teeth included a version of the first episode re-shot using Halo 3.
  • Phelous:
    • He considers his first review of Mac and Me to be an invokedOld Shame due to its poor editing and his poor acting. He has gone back throughout the years to edit it and try to improve the quality. This includes improving the lighting and getting rid of the long pauses after his jokes.
    • After the revelation that Justin Carmichal was a sexual predator, his Pulse 2006 review was re-edited to purge Carmichal from it and replace him with Benzaie.

    Western Animation 
  • Classic Disney Shorts:
    • In 1948, "The Three Little Pigs" was partly reanimated and redubbed so that the Big Bad Wolf's peddler disguise doesn't look or sound like a Jewish stereotype.
    • The 1933 short "The Night Before Christmas" had a scene near the end where a kid looks into his fireplace and comes out in blackface from the soot. An edited version has since been made in which the kid, while still getting soot on his face, doesn't appear to be in blackface.
    • When a shortened version of "Mickey's Parrot" was prepared for Disney Channel's Have a Laugh! series, Mickey's shotgun was replaced with a broom.
    • Television airings and home video releases of “Santa’s Workshop” remove a scene where Santa inspects dolls that say “mama”, the last one is a blackface doll who says “mammy!”.
  • For the Beavis and Butt-Head: The Mike Judge Collection series of DVD sets, Mike Judge opted to reconfigure the show's run to remove Old Shame elements. This included:
    • omission of some 70-odd episodes he deemed Old Shame, including all but a handful of episodes from before Season 5.
    • Many episodes, particularly earlier episodes on the first volume, were presented as Director's Cuts, which removed footage ranging from Padding to the duo playing copyrighted songs through air guitar to jokes Judge eventually deemed as being in poor taste.
    • As of 2022, Judge has changed his mind on the old episodes and has allowed MTV to remaster the original show in its entirety for Paramount+. Episodes omitted altogether from the DVD's are present, and episodes presented in director's cuts have been reverted back to their original cuts, reinstating removed footage.
  • The Fairly Oddparents: Early airings of "Timvisible" had Cosmo and Wanda being taught the Spanish for "Where is the government cheese?"; all modern releases have it "Where is the smelly cheese?", with the teacher's dialogue altered accordingly. Whether this was because of 9/11 or something else remains unknown.
  • Tom and Jerry:
    • The reissue version of The Yankee Doodle Mouse removes a dated reference to war bonds, in which Tom chases Jerry into a mouse hole and gets his head stuck inside, resulting in Jerry using his tongue to paste savings stamps into a book; this is followed by a shot of a war communique reading "Enemy gets in a few good licks".
    • Some cartoons have been altered by reanimating Mammy Two-Shoes as a slim white woman and redubbing her voice. Those edits have been rarely seen since the early 90s, when Mammy was reinstated, but her voice was redubbed with a more realistic African-American voice instead of the stereotypical, dumb-sounding black voice she originally had. The DVDs have a mix of both voices, depending on the cartoon, but the "Golden Collection" Blu-rays retain the original voice for every cartoon.
  • South Park:
    • Both discussed and parodied in the episode "Free Hat". The plot of the episode concerns the boys' attempt to get Lucas & Spielberg to stop changing their films. A Parody Commercial in the middle features Live-Action Matt Stone & Trey Parker, creators of South Park, offering for sale an altered version of the pilot episode of South Park featuring all-new CGI.
      Announcer: Yes, all the charm of a simple little cartoon will melt before your eyes as it is replaced by newer and more standardized animation!
      Parker: In the scene at the bus stop, we always meant to have Imperial walkers and giant dewback lizards in the background, but simply couldn't afford it.
    • Also, when the boys break into the video library of George Lucas himself, they find not only home videos, but altered versions of them as well (e.g. "Kids' First Swimming Lesson w/ Digitally Enhanced Weather").
    • In the episode, George Lucas is more hesitant to changing the movies and Steven Spielberg is more antagonistic, but in real life, Lucas has continued to change his movies and Spielberg regretted doing it.
    • South Park itself has re-animated HD versions of the first 12 seasons, which were originally animated in 4:3 in standard definition. The DVDs feature the original versions, but the reruns and streams on HBO Max and feature the revised versions.
    • Matt and Trey discuss this on the DVD commentary for the episode "A Million Little Fibers", saying that if they could "George Lucas" one episode, it would be this one.
  • Generation 2 of the Transformers franchise was given its own television show, which was actually several episodes of the Generation 1 cartoon edited to add CGI effects and other minor differences. Before that, the fifth season of the original cartoon, airing after the Grand Finale "The Rebirth", consisted entirely of rebroadcasts of older episodes, as well as the movie in five parts (albeit slightly bowdlerised to remove both swears, as well as featuring the music video for "The Touch" due to the last part running slightly short), with additional live-action bookend sequences featuring conversations between Optimus Prime and a human boy named Tommy Kennedy.
  • Gumby was given this in the 1950s and 1960s episodes, when they were rerun as part of the 1988 reboot Gumby Adventures. All of the old episodes had their soundtracks redubbed with new music, voice tracks and sound effects to sound consistent with the new episodes of the time. Many Gumby fans did not like this change, and were very disappointed when the initial DVD releases of the series from Rhino used the redubbed soundtracks (due to legal rights involving the John Seely/Capitol stock music utilized in the originals.) Current DVD and digital releases of the 1950s and 1960s shorts utilize the original soundtracks, while the redubbed versions have become harder to find in recent years (thankfully).
  • Looney Tunes: There were some occasions where certain jokes were redone, either due to sensitivity or for being severely outdated.
    • In the 1940 short "A Wild Hare", Bugs covers Elmer's eyes and tells him to guess who he is; one of his guesses is Carole Lombard. When the short was reissued after Lombard's death in a plane crash, Elmer's guess was changed to Barbara Stanwyck.
    • In the 1948 short "Bugs Bunny Rides Again", Yosemite Sam introduces himself as "The roughest, toughest, he-man-stuffest hombre that ever crossed the Rio Grande — and I don't mean Mahatma Gandhi!" When the short was reissued following Gandhi's assassination that same year, the line was changed to "And I ain't no mamby-pamby!"
    • The 1959 short "Wild and Wooly Hare" features a scene where Yosemite Sam throws a tin can into the air and shoots it full of holes before daring Bugs to try it. The original cut had Bugs try to shoot the can on its way down and accidentally fire at Sam, but when the short had to be edited for Saturday morning television, the scene was reanimated so that Bugs now shoots corks to plug the holes.
  • Futurama: In the 2001 episode "The Day the Earth Stood Stupid", a stupefied Bender shouts "Let's all join the Reform Party". When Comedy Central acquired the show near the end of the decade, the line was changed to "Let's all join the Tea Party".
    • In "The Cryonic Woman", Bender takes out a disembodied arm with a career chip installed, and when it is scanned, it says "Prime Minister of Norway". Later, in syndication, it was changed to "Chainsaw juggler" after the 2011 terrorist attack in Oslo.
  • Tex Avery MGM Cartoons: A few shorts released during World War II were reissued with rationing jokes removed.
    • The reissue of "Dumb-Hounded" removes a newspaper headline about an award for the killer's capture, either $5,000 or one pound of coffee.
    • Similarly, the opening to "Wild and Woolfy" features a "Wanted!" Poster of the Wolf promising a reward of $5,000. The reissue alters the poster to remove the alternate reward, a "C" ration book.
    • "The Shooting of Dan McGoo" had two cigarette rationing jokes altered. First, a background painting was redone to remove a sign outside the tavern, which had the word "CIGARETTES" crossed out and the phrase "Are you kiddin'?" written below it. Second, while Red performs onstage, Dangerous Dan McGoo tries to woo her by offering a valuable gift, a box full of cigarette cartons; it was later changed to a pearl necklace.
  • A Charlie Brown Christmas went through several changes and touch-ups, apart from removing the Coca-Cola ads.


Video Example(s):


Go Go Moba Boy

The cartoon was given an extended cut in 2004 with improved animation, re-recorded voices and alternate music.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (5 votes)

Example of:

Main / GeorgeLucasAlteredVersion

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