Hoping to bolster its bottom line for anxious shareholders, Warner Brothers is contemplating releasing an R-rated verison of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice later this year to catapult the film over the billion-dollar mark in worldwide box-office receipts. In a disturbing development, the studio is debating whether to showcase an unedited iteration of its Zack Snyder-directed superhero flick to capitalize on the legions of fans who demand a boost of bloodlust and bone-splintering action to get their jollies.
Any decision made to lure more rear ends in theater seats with a flourish of amped-up violence, salty language or gratuitous nudity is a dangerous game to play, opening the door for director cuts relying solely on prurient interests and sadistic scenes to keep stockholders happy and secure a higher ranking among similar movies. Except for remastered or special anniversary editions of classic movies receiving a limited theatrical run, this sort of alternative edition gamesmanship has been the sole domain of the Blu-ray release. Will this make Batman v Superman a better cinematic experience? Certainly not, though it is apt to attract a certain segment of the moviegoing public that wants to revel in the singular sensations of seeing the movie in a more uncensored form, or felt short-changed with the tamer PG-13 offering.
To this humble cinephile, it shows a lack of confidence in the original theatrical cut and shortchanges those who paid premium dollars to view the accepted form of the finished film. Call it the Deadpool effect, as studio brass glowed with the colossal $758 million haul the raunchy, R-rated Ryan Reynolds flick has raked in and likely hope some of that crazed, cash-paying crowd might be enticed to see a more brutal cut of BvS. It was already announced that an R-rated Ultimate Edition would be packaged in the movie's Blu-ray home video release, and it's unclear exactly what scenes excised for their intense violence or darker edge might be stitched into this latest potential theatrical cut. Batman v Superman's global box-office tally currently stands at $783 million.
Do you support this trend of rolling out more violent versions of a film to further fill corporate coffers, or are you a purist and believe the best possible product should be delivered at the original time of its studio release?
(Via Comic Book Movie)