Crimes of the Future Won’t Get a Director’s Cut: « I Don’t Pay Any Attention to Censorship »
Don’t expect to see a director’s cut of David Cronenberg’s latest film, Crimes of the Future.
During an interview with IGN, the legendary filmmaker gave us a glimpse into his process, revealing that only two planned shots were cut, simply because they were repeating information the viewer already knew.
“There will be no director’s cut because for me every cut is the director’s cut,” he explained. “There is no other cut.”
The 79-year-old filmmaker returned to body horror with Crimes of the Future – a sci-fi tale exploring body modification as performance art. But while some directors may have been forced to cut certain scenes that are too gory, Cronenberg didn’t hold back.
“I don’t pay any attention to censorship or anything like that,” he said. “Each country has its own weird censorship. If you try to protect yourself against all of that, you are paralyzing yourself. So, I ignore all that. And I just decide what the movie wants.”
In this case, Crimes of the Future depicts some extreme body modification as Saul Tenser (Viggo Mortensen) explored what it means to be human.
“Some movies, extreme violence is needed in the movie,” he said. “There are other movies where there’s a violent action that takes place narratively, but doing it in an extreme, gory way would derail the movie, it would take people out of the movie because of the tone of the rest of the movie. So, each movie has its own demands and that’s all I was paying attention to completely with this movie. And that for me is the normal way.”
Essentially, Cronenberg was able to make Crimes of the Future the way he wanted. Although there were a couple of cut scenes, the reason they were edited out is tamer than you might expect.
“There were two scenes, not very long, that I cut,” explained Cronenberg. “And the only reason was, it’s like your second draft. I never did a second draft. So, I shot everything that I had written and discovered that two scenes seemed to be repetitions of information in other scenes, and suddenly it seemed redundant, that’s it. So, not for any other reason, so I took those scenes out.”
Essentially, that means there’s very little material to make an extended cut with, and the only version we’ll be seeing is the one that’s heading to theaters: “I wouldn’t want to put those [shots] back in because… I was right to take them out.”
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We awarded Crimes of the Near Future a 6/10 review, saying that « the film presents imaginative questions about expression and sexuality, but mostly asks them in words, rather than exploring them cinematically. »
Crimes of the Future stars Viggo Mortensen as Saul Tenser, alongside Léa Seydoux, Kristen Stewart, and Scott Speedman. David Cronenberg directed the film based on his own original script.
The film debuted at the Cannes Film Festival on May 23, 2022, before its official release on June 3.
Ryan Leston is an entertainment journalist and film critic for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter.