‘The Last Jedi’ is going to be a long one. Not ‘Lord of the Rings’-long, to be sure, but nonetheless. The film, which according to the BBFC’s certification information clocks in at a whopping 152 minutes, is on track to become the longest ‘Star Wars’ film to date (beating out the previous record of 142 minutes, which was held by ‘Attack of the Clones’). And it was very nearly longer than that, with a rough cut that reportedly hit the three-hour mark.
All of that adds up to one thing: deleted scenes! And according to director Rian Johnson, we will, in fact, have plenty of those when ‘The Last Jedi’ arrives on home video next year. Johnson elaborates:
“A lot of really good stuff came out in the edit. I actually just reviewed the deleted scenes we’re gonna have on the blu-ray. There’s a bunch of… Some of my favorite scenes ended up having to come out just structurally. There’s a lot of really substantial, really good scenes. There’s a couple whole sequences actually that we lifted out. It’s weirdly – and this always happens – it’s like your babies you have to kill. It’s some of my favorite stuff from the movie.”
The most interesting part of Johnson’s statement is his description of the cut material as “substantial” and including “whole sequences.” ‘Star Wars’ is certainly no stranger to deleted scenes (just check out the bonus features on the 2011 Blu-ray box set if you need any proof of that), but seldom has the material left on the cutting room floor been what I would consider “substantial”. Indeed, the most substantial examples that I can think of are subplots that were excised from ‘Attack of the Clones’ and ‘Revenge of the Sith.’ While I feel those films (particularly in ‘Sith) would have benefitted from their inclusion, they were ultimately not seriously hurt by removing this material. How will ‘The Last Jedi’ compare? Unfortunately, we won’t know for sure until the film arrives on Blu-ray in the spring.
Directed by Rian Johnson, ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ is due to arrive in theaters on December 15, 2017. The film stars Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Anthony Daniels, Domhnall Gleeson, and Gwendoline Christie.