The 192 Minute J.J. Abrams Rise Of Skywalker Cut Is Coming Sooner Than You Think

Three hours and twelve minutes.

According to anonymous sources inside multiple organizations like Lucasfilm, Disney and Bad Robot and confirmed through additional reporting like Deadline’s interview with The Rise of Skywalker editor, Maryann Brandon; J.J. Abrams and TROS team struggled with wanting to release the cut that more closely matched the Director’s vision, but were disallowed from doing so.

That cut? The J.J. Abrams Director’s Cut, clocking in at no less than one hundred and ninety-two minutes.

But why, if there was a more complete cut, that could include all the amazing moments J.J. wanted fans to see, would the final theatrical version be less than? For what inane reason would such a short-sighted decision have been made?

I won’t make you wait for it.

The reason? Disney brass were so concerned after The Last Jedi divided fans and created a maelstrom of anger towards Director Rian Johnson, that they didn’t want to leave anything up to chance. An insider tells The Story is Not the Story that “they wanted to ensure that The Rise of Skywalker wrapped up the trilogy neatly, without creating any conflicts with fans of the original three films, through delivering moments that brought back classic characters, introduced special Jedi powers and reversed the Luke Skywalker moments that fans couldn’t stomach.”

They also didn’t want a film that was over three hours, which would have reduced the number of times the film could have screened on a daily basis in theaters, thus reducing their potential box office. And with The Last Jedi having divided fans, the last thing Disney wanted was to divide them any further. But they’d lost their way. Even Disney’s Bob Iger had admitted to the brand’s over saturation after Solo and didn’t want to saturate the brand any further by delivering a cut they weren’t sure could get it done. Disney didn’t even know what the fans wanted anymore; they were shooting fish in a barrel. If this final movie was also a misstep, they’d want to bag as much money as they could as quickly as they could, and a three plus hour cut wouldn’t let them do that.

For J.J. Abrams it was whiplash. Disney wanted to deliver a movie that would make up for the last one, but after all the sequences and cameos were shot, they were told it couldn’t all fit into the 140 minute goal they didn’t want to exceed.

And exceed they did. The cameos and callbacks were so numerous, it was too much to pack into a film; yet J.J. didn’t want to let anyone down. Some felt that they had “overdone the fan service” to the point of ridiculousness, mandating the return of characters like Ewan MacGregor’s Obi Wan, Samuel Jackson’s Mace Windu, Liam Neeson’s Qui-Gon Jinn, Jake Lloyd’s Anakin Skywalker and even a trip back to the Sarlacc pit. There were sequences shot on Endor that were referenced in The Rise of Skywalker yet only showed up in a 3 second wide shot featuring some of the Ewoks. While Disney did mandate a return for The Emperor, there were even more characters who landed in footage that was cut out of the final released cut. A Cloud City reference brought back Lobot alongside Billy Dee Williams but was cut for time, a Wampa cameo was removed at the last minute, and a secret Boba Fett connection was said to have also been written, shot, but never finished in post.

But let’s get back to that 192 minute J.J. Abrams cut.

According to the editor of The Rise of Skywalker, Maryann Brandon, they barely had the time to get the current cut into theaters. They wanted to do so much more. As was witnessed by the rushed opening to the film and according to anonymous sources on the inside, as the reviews and backlash has begun to build around The Rise of Skywalker and the not-so-great critical reviews (the lowest out of the entire nine films), Disney brass began to change their tune. Maybe 192 minutes wasn’t so bad if it meant there was an opportunity to bag even more box office like they’d done on Avengers: Endgame by including additional footage two months into its release.

The game plan had worked on Endgame and as early as December 28th, the rumbling started to grow louder. What about releasing the extended version of The Rise of Skywalker into theaters around late January, after the fanboys and girls had already paid to see it once or twice? The plan would be to release a longer version that included 3-5 additional sequences, then hint at the even longer Director’s Cut for it’s digital and home entertainment release. With an exclusive run on Disney Plus they would draw even more engagement by keeping those added sequences not in the re-release as exclusives to the service. That would clearly drive even more subscribers to the new streaming service as well.

So here we sit. With the J.J. Cut trending and the Internet abuzz, wondering what’s real and what’s next.

The word is this:

  • An extended version of The Rise of Skywalker will be announced in the coming week, releasing near the end of January, and including 3-5 additional sequences fit into the narrative. This should bring the cut up from 142 minutes to about 165 minutes.
  • Rumored sequences to be included in this cut involve an extended Endor sequence that occurs before the final shot in the current film, Lobot and Lando in a sequence that predates the chase in the desert, and a slew of ghost Jedis returning alongside Luke and Leia and participating in the final sequence to unseat the Emperor.
  • This new cut will be simply treated as an Extended Cut, and will include a post-credits sequence highlighting additional sequences that will be released with the official Blu Ray release of The Rise of Skywalker which will have a special J.J. Abrams Director’s Cut version of the film at 185 minutes.
  • When The Rise of Skywalker enters the streaming window exclusively on Disney Plus it will include an additional 7 minutes of extra footage that didn’t get finished in post production as a part of its exclusive run on the streaming upstart.

This is what we’re hearing here at SNTS. As we explained up top, this is from folks on the inside, who tipped us anonymously, so you can take this as gospel or drivel — that’s up to you.

But three hours and twelve minutes?

Does anyone really need that?

28 Comments

  1. Steve

    Yes please give us all that good Star Wars footage don’t question further if you filmed it let’s see it alternate storylines and all. I’ve already happily paid to see the rise of Skywalker 6 times for myself and bought friends an additional 3 viewings

    1. Mike

      We definitely need that. It would have been better for Disney and Lucasfilm to announce that they were delaying the film until Memorial Day weekend to honor the release of the original Star Wars film as well as give us a well rounded film that would close up the Skywalker Saga. Legendary did it with Godzilla vs. Kong and everyone was happy with it. In the interest of putting out quantity or quality, we the fans scream quality!! Give us the best film possible. We all sat through Avengers Endgame so we’d definitely sit through a 3 hour Star Wars film.

  2. Tommy

    Yes, we need that three hours and twelve minutes.
    We need the secret Boba Fett connection, as well.
    I’m almost holding my breath.

  3. Gary

    We feel robbed from their
    attempt to make more
    money from us they have just short changed us. Release everything who cares how long the movie runs for as we have waited long enough. If the powers to be are so concerned about making a $ then work on your merchandise side of things as we thought there would be Star Wars
    merchandise everywhere in time for the movie release. What we found in stores was nothing but disappointment to say the least. At the end of your film, the part when Rey finally worked out her last name she was happy to use, we were expecting to find new merchandise with her entire name on the packaging.
    But there was nothing 🤦‍♂️

    Get your act together guys.

  4. Barronmore

    Yes, give the story whatever time it needs to be complete. It’s what LotR did and it worked out quite well. And if that means 30 minutes of wrap up, that means 30 minutes of wrap up…we’ve already spent 40 YEARS watching Star Wars and specifically 6+ hours watching the last trillogy…what’s a few minutes more…

    This is a short sighted ‘cost cutting’ decision by Disney….one in a number of bad decisions to either save or earn more money. While im not willing to say Star Wars was better under Lucas, I can say that Disney is killing the cash cow….

    1. BoGal

      Muy doloroso es ver a Disney hacer juego a STAR WARS, pues en el corazón del fan no hay comercializmo, solo es ver ese espíritu, la fuerza, sus personajes junto a la historia que quisiéramos nunca acabase. Esta claro de quien le dio vida a STAR WARS, el genial único Jorge Lucas que jamás será igualado.

  5. ToddC

    The test case for this should be Extended Editions of LOTR by Peter Jackson. Real fans of those movies know that the director’s cut, although very long at 3-4 hours each, are the “true” version of the films. Unlike some movies which include “deleted scenes” in home release, and we can all see why they were cut, LOTR EE flows much better than the theatrical releases, and extra scenes add much needed context.

    I feel like TROS is in the same boat –too much to wrap up in only 2 hours. I get it that the theatrical release had to be cut down to accommodate this. But having made their money, Disney & LucasFilms need to now give the people what they want — complete JJA cut of TROS, unconstrained by theater runtime limits and associated economics. There is no shame in admitting they couldn’t fit it all into 2 hours. And two different cuts worked out fine for LOTR and New Line Cinema. They probably even made more money with that model.

    1. Dawn

      We so agree that is the ONLY way to see LoTR is the extended and the only way we watch that series .. hope we have the final battle as Star Wars theory stated with the force ghosts behind Rey in that confrontation .. he stated it like how i imagined.. not just by voices in her head and a crossed set of sabers .. i was so disappointed how it got fan serviced the way it did.. love ya Chewie btw

  6. Zeke

    Disney is so crass and greedy and stupid… FOUR VERSIONS of it then, as they expect to pick our pockets each time anew?? The hell with you. You stupid greedy morons didn’t learn with the Last Jedi, or Solo, or anything else. Release the whole dang cut in the theater now or I refuse to watch any of the others. You’re not going to extort three more viewings out of me and all the cash with it – you’ll get zero. A big fat zero. Until your stupid greedy shortsighted stupidity finally LEARNS.

  7. Jason

    I definitely think they need to make this happen for sure. It will make it officially complete, and being tailored for audiences to purchase it to stream it, buy it digitally or buy it on DVD/Blu-ray.

  8. Turmoil

    This is dumb, and it sounds like JJ is trying to save face so WB doesn’t put his projects there on indefinite hold until his contract with them expires in 2024.

  9. Dennis

    So…any word on when this supposed additional material in a rerelease might happen? It’s January 15th, and so far…crickets surrounding this. Only talk right now is Colin Trevorrow’s leaker old script for IX.

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