With the Snyder Cut of Justice League now actually happening, loads of fans have started asking about other recent films where studio involvement dramatically changed a director’s vision for theatrical release. One such film was David Ayer’s Suicide Squad. In response to queries from fans on Twitter, the filmmaker revealed that his original cut of the 2016 DC Comics film was a “soulful drama” before being “beaten into a ‘comedy'” by Warner Bros. in response to Batman v Superman’s failings and Deadpool’s success.
Many expressed dismay that Ayer never got to release the film he wanted to make. This included Cathy Yan, director of sister DCEU production Birds of Prey, who sympathized with her peer.
Seeing as how Yan has only made two feature films, and one of those was a tiny, barely-seen indie production, it was immediately assumed by some that her knowing “the pain” was Yan admitting that WB had overruled her artistic control on Birds of Prey as well. The film admittedly had all kinds of marketing issues (terrible trailers, no sense of the R-rated action, no focus on the character outside of Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn, etc) resulting in a crappy box office return, but despite all that ended up being pretty damn good actually.
However, there had been rumours of reshoots that plagued the production during test screenings. Now reshoots are perfectly normal for these types of films, but there was one particular rumour that stood out. In the film, Ewan McGregor’s villainous Roman Sionis is hunting down Ella Jay Basco’s Cassandra Cain after she swallowed a diamond that had been encoded with the account numbers of the Bertinelli family fortune. Reportedly though, the original script had the diamond contain nude pics of Sionis. Specifically, “dick pics”. Yes, you read that correctly.
And with Yan’s apparent admission of studio meddling, reporter/critic Grace Randolph latched onto that rumour again, taking it as confirmation that the studio had the original storyline axed in reshoots. Unfortunately for Randolph, the journalist-turned-filmmaker Yan was having none of this rumour-mongering business on her watch.
Well, damn. That was quite the clap-back. To be fair though, Yan admits there was a plot point involving nude pics of Sionis at some point. So if not for the… small reason that Randolph claims, why was the scene reshot? Well, it actually wasn’t reshot. Not technically.
For those of you who don’t know, ADR is “automatic dialog replacement” and is a common occurrence in film productions, where actors record lines of dialogue in-studio to replace the ones recorded earlier on-set (either for better sound quality or script changes). So before you start calling out for the #DickPicCut of Birds of Prey, know that they just dubbed over the so-called “dick pic” scene as it was a joke that fell flat. Nothing more.
If you still want to focus your attention on demanding studios release actual unreleased different cuts of films though, might I interest you in the #ButtholeCut of Cats?
Last Updated: June 4, 2020