The first cut of most movies compiles virtually every scene that the director shot to give a filmmaker their first taste of how the script translated to the screen. In the case of The Last Jedi, writer/director Rian Johnson recently shared that the completed first cut of the film was over three hours.
“We had a long movie from the start," Johnson confessed. "It was well over three hours, the first cut… It’s much better at two and a half [hours] than it was at over three, but it was a cut I had put together, is where we started. And it was over three hours.”
The filmmaker went on to reveal that, not only were certain scenes and sequences trimmed and edited to be tighter, but entire sequences were removed to help with the film's pacing.
“A lot of really good stuff came out in the edit," Johnson pointed out. "I actually just reviewed the deleted scenes we’re gonna have
Despite those scenes being cut, Johnson's comments about their appearances on the home video release promise that those moments won't be gone forever.
A recent trend in home video releases is to re-edit the deleted scenes back into the theatrical release to create an all-new "extended cut," but Johnson's personal preferences may prevent this happening with The Last Jedi.
“I’m really not into [releasing an extended cut]. I feel like the cut is what it is because I feel like it’s the best version of the movie, so the ‘director’s cut’ is the movie that’s going out in theaters," Johnson admitted. "All the deleted scenes, no matter how much I love them, they came out for a reason and it’s all for the greater good of the movie itself. You can watch the deleted scenes on their own, I think that’s the way to watch them, but the movie is definitely the best version of the movie I think.”
Fans might be desperate to get as much Star Wars content as possible, but with The Last Jedi being the longest film in the saga thus far,
The Last Jedi lands in theaters on December 15.