M3GAN writer wants a “gorier” unrated cut

A still from M3GANUniversal Pictures

New horror movie M3GAN is already making a splash in cinemas, but its writer is holding out hope for a “gorier” unrated cut following the release of the PG-13 version.

M3GAN, the newest horror film to come from Jason Blum, James Wan, Gerard Johnstone, and Akela Cooper, has certainly made an impact at the cinemas.

Despite many seeing the film as a nothing more than a meme when its trailer first dropped, it’s been receiving great reviews, and currently sits at 93% on Rotten Tomatoes.

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As much as horrors go, it appears to be relatively light-hearted, with a PG-13 rating, which has likely led to its widespread appeal. But apparently, the film used to be way darker – or rather, “way gorier.”

M3GAN writer wants “unrated version” with original gore

In a recent LA Times interview with M3GAN’s writer, Akela Cooper, the topic of the film’s PG-13 rating was discussed, along with how the original script was changed by this rating in terms of gore.

Cooper stated: “No shade to Universal, love them, and I understand that once the trailer went viral, teenagers got involved and you want them to be able to see it.

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“There should be an unrated version at some point… I heard it is on the books. But yes, it was way gorier. Her body count in the script was higher than in the movie.

“She did kill a bunch more people, including a couple of characters whom James was like, ‘I like what you did with those people, but I want them to live.’ I was merciless, but again, that is me. My humor is extremely dark.”

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Cooper also went on to explain how she wrote the gore that the film actually had: “It’s kind of twisted because you have to put yourself in this situation – ‘If I’m in this location and I’m 4 feet tall, what can I do? I’m this size and I’ve got these tools to use to kill people.’ But it’s also therapeutic. If you’re having a bad day, just write a horror script and kill a bunch of characters on paper.”

Why was M3GAN made to be less gory?

As stated by Cooper, a big part of reducing the gore was to make the film PG-13, so that teens and under-25s would be more likely to see the movie.

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The film’s gore was softened, and a viral marketing campaign was heavily incorporated, which involved TikTok-esque dances within the movie that of course caught on over the internet. M3GAN lookalikes appeared on Jimmy Kimmel and at football games, and producer Jason Blum even dress like the doll at the film’s global premiere.

And while this may have led to the film being less gory, aiming at a younger audience worked, gaining the film $30.2 million at the box office during its opening weekend. Not only that, but M3GAN was able to beat general cinema statistics, pulling in an audience that was 53% female and 44% Under-25.

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“Everyone has been saying that we’ve lost the under-25 crowd,” stated Blum in an interview with Deadline, “M3GAN is a clear indication that we have not.”

“If you make the right movie, and make it the right way, the audience is there,” he continued. “The audience is starved for fun, entertaining movies. There’s not enough.”

M3GAN is currently playing in USA cinemas, and will premiere in the UK on January 13, 2023.

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