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Dune (1984) Poster

(1984)

Alternate Versions

As of 2006, the Alan Smithee version has been released in a two disk set containing both the Lynch version and the extended version, however, many scene have been edited out once again. The heart Plug scene when the baron is introduced is not in the extended version anymore (it is still in the original) and Thufir's death scene is still missing. (Thufir's death scene is included as a deleted scene in the special features)
Region 3 NTSC Korean DVD by Spectrum is the 189 minute television version. It comes on two discs and has English Dolby Digital Audio.
When Dune was first released theatrically in the UK in 1984 it was cut by 37 seconds in order to obtain a "PG" rating, with the heart plug scene being heavily edited as well as cuts to the fight between Paul & Feyd. However, the first video release and all releases of the film after the first video were uncut and have a "15" rating.
Japanese Laserdisc boxset TV version correct feature running time is actually 176min 34 sec despite being cited as 189 mins. This is due to the fact that the end of Part 1 (side 2) has the closing credits 3 mins 27 secs, and the intro to Part 2 (side 3) has a summary of Part 1 using repeated footage of 6 mins 41 secs. Part 2 (side 4) has same closing credits of 3 mins 27 secs. The laserdisc has the same Prologue as the TV version available on Castle Home video release and appears to be the same version as on the DVD.
A third version of "Dune", seen on KTVU in San Francisco in 1992, is the only one that edits together footage from both the theatrical and TV versions, putting back the violent scenes (such as the "heart sucking sequence") and theatrical versions of some scenes (such as Paul and Jessica running from a thumper). Also, Lynch's name is restored at the end (watch for the "Assistant to Mr. Lynch" credit).
Contrary to popular rumors, no 6-hours long director's cut, ever existed. The only "director's cut" of the film was the one shown theatrically; Lynch never had a hand in any other version of Dune. Lynch's original intention was for Dune to have been about 3+ hours long. To that end, about 5 hours was shot. This is also confirmed by author 'Frank Herbert' wrote in the introduction to the book "Eye". It would be impossible for a 6-hour version to exist and even a 5-hour Dune would mean the inclusion of many scenes never intended for the final version (for reasons of redundancy, etc.). It is only necessary to read any of the final scripts for the film to realize that there was never any intention of making Dune more than 4 hours in length at the very most: the script for anything more just was never there.
There are two theatrical versions available in Europe, the only two differences between being the short scene in which the Navigator can be seen "at work" folding space; and a very short clip showing the cheek of Duke Leto torn open.
Region 2 DVD version, billed as 'TV extended version' is 180 minutes long and contains the extended intro and scenes. Lynch's name has again been removed and re-credited to Allen Smithee due to his objection to the extended intro.
The region 2 DVD released by Castle, includes some footage not included in the original Alan Smithee version. One of these scenes, is when the Atreides family arrives on Arrakis. The fremen are watching them from a distance using a device that looks somewhat like binoculars.
The Region 2 Castle DVD lists the sound as being MONO, and yet the soundtrack is quite clearly in full stereo. Sadly, the source material for this release is clearly from a videotape master with tiny sound dropouts and a slight picture degradation. It is also in 4:3 and cuts out many of the gorier scenes.
Some video and DVD prints (for example, the Spanish release by Manga Films) have about 15 minutes of reversed footage, from the moment where Paul drinks the Water of Life, to his appearance in the court of the Emperor along with Gurney and Stilgar. Look how Gurney and Stilgar exchange positions in the opening shots of that final scene (on the top of the staircase).
Theatrical version is 137 minutes long; TV version seen both in syndication and on most cable networks, prepared under protest from (and eventually disowned by) director David Lynch, is approx. 176 minutes long (minus commercials) and features outtakes, additional footage, test close-up shots of certain actors, and even fabricated (i.e. "cheated") footage (made up of repeated stock footage from certain points in the film to make it appear that footage had been added--one reason why Lynch took his name off the credits of the TV version). The TV print credits 'Alan Smithee' as director. Whereas the theatrical release features a brief introductory narration spoken by Princess Irulan, the TV version has a longer spoken introduction by an uncredited male narrator, with still paintings and drawings used to bring the viewer up to speed on the story. The TV version (which has been released on Japanese LaserDisc and overseas DVDs) has additional footage of the Fremen that lacks the blue color in their eyes, indicating that the scenes were cut before special f/x were added.

See also

Trivia | Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Connections | Soundtracks

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