Earlier this month we told you about how U.S. distributor The Weinstein Company was forcing director Bong Joon-ho to trim twenty minutes out of his hit South Korean film SNOWPIERCER to make it more 'accessible' to U.S. audiences, whatever the hell that means. The scissor-happy company, notorious for requesting numerous cuts to dumb down their acquisitions for the U.S. market, had also reportedly asked that opening and closing voiceovers be added to the film, along with the cuts, and the reasoning behind these changes were pretty petty according to film critic and programmer Tony Rayns who stated...
"TWC people have told Bong that their aim is to make sure the film 'will be understood by audiences in Iowa ... and Oklahoma.'"
Leaving aside the issue of what Weinstein thinks of its audience, it seems to say the least anomalous that the rest of the English-speaking world has to be dragged down to the presumed level of American mid-west hicks."
Now Bong Jooh-ho himself has spoken out about the cuts at a press conference held yesterday where he revealed that he may not have to cut too much of the film, stating...
I came here after editing for the American version. I’ve never produced a new version for overseas premieres, and this is the first time I’m making a new version.
Weinstein is actually being pretty soft toward editing, probably because it’s noticed how critics have praised the film and know how angry movie fans get over new edits. They even asked me which parts I want to include in the film.
Which parts to include? He should have responded with "All of it!".
Oh well...at least the company is supposedly listening to some of his suggestions. Perhaps it won't be a complete disaster after all. We're still not happy about the forced cuts, but we can hope that Bong Joon-ho will still be able to deliver a great film with this "American" cut.