Last week, fans of Mike Flanagan's Doctor Sleep, a sequel to the iconic horror classic The Shining, were undoubtedly delighted to learn that a 3-hour director's cut of the film has been created and is headed to home video early next year.
Doctor Sleep will be arriving on Digital on January 21st, 2020, followed by 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD on February 4th, and today we have word straight from Flanagan himself (via Collider) on what we can expect from the release.
"I’m really excited that WB let me create this cut, much less release it. They really supported it – to the point that they made sure all of the new material with VFX was fully finished, additional score was composed and orchestrated just for this cut, and we did a full mix as well. They really let us do this right – it’s a finished, complete, fully polished new cut of the movie. Nothing is temp.
We shot a LOT of material for this movie, and I always knew it wouldn’t all fit. I was reticent to call this a “Director’s Cut” at first, as I absolutely love and stand by the cut I made for our theatrical release. But there was stuff I actively decided to remove from that cut that I missed, and that I would think about even weeks after the fact. I was elated when Warner Bros. expressed interest in preserving that cut for home video.
There is new material throughout the whole film. Some of it is brand new stuff that was never included in the theatrical cut, and there’s also a handful of extended (or altered) scenes as well. There was never any intention to release this cut theatrically, we always knew it was too long. But we worked on it alongside the theatrical cut throughout post, and it made it a lot easier to make hard decisions in the edit, knowing that someday this cut might see the light of day.
There are some big new scenes, for sure. I don’t want to spoil any of that, but I can say there is new material throughout (including in the final act at the Overlook). Some of my favorite stuff involved Young Danny and Wendy (there’s some terrific material with Alex Essoe I’m thrilled is restored here), and will be familiar to fans of the book. There’s also a fair amount of new stuff involving young Abra in the first act, learning about her shine, and how it affects her parents.
And there are some surprises I definitely won’t spoil here.
All in all, I think this cut is more literary than the theatrical cut. It very much feels like reading a novel… and is even broken into chapters, which gave this cut a very fun structure.
I’m very proud of it and so grateful that it’ll be available to fans."
With various "director's cuts" of hit horror films being teased and not actually released on home video in recent years (looking at you IT and Midsommar), it's great to know that one of this year's best films is coming home with nearly 30 minutes of extra footage!
In Doctor Sleep, still irrevocably scarred by the trauma he endured as a child at the Overlook, Dan Torrance has fought to find some semblance of peace. But that peace is shattered when he encounters Abra, a courageous teenager with her own powerful extrasensory gift, known as the "shine." Instinctively recognizing that Dan shares her power, Abra has sought him out, desperate for his help against the merciless Rose the Hat and her followers, The True Knot, who feed off the shine of innocents in their quest for immortality.
Forming an unlikely alliance, Dan and Abra engage in a brutal life-or-death battle with Rose. Abra’s innocence and fearless embrace of her shine compel Dan to call upon his own powers as never before—at once facing his fears and reawakening the ghosts of the past.
Doctor Sleep stars Ewan McGregor (Star Wars: Episodes I, II & III, T2 Trainspotting) as Dan Torrance, Rebecca Ferguson (the Mission: Impossible films, The Greatest Showman) as Rose the Hat, and Kyliegh Curran, in her major feature film debut, as Abra.
The main ensemble cast also includes Carl Lumbly, Zahn McClarnon, Emily Alyn Lind, Bruce Greenwood, Jocelin Donahue, Alex Essoe and Cliff Curtis.