Johnny Mnemonic: William Gibson on Cuts & Versions

From William Gibson’s website, circa 2003:


Alas, that’s the tragedy of JM as released: it was *full* then, as written and shot, but Sony surgically excised every one they could. They’d have probably cut the Room Service speech if it had been possible.

Ever notice how little sense Dolph Lundgren’s Street Preacher character makes? Just this big lunatic who periodically rages onstage and tosses people around?

I’ll tell you something you may not believe: Dolph Lungren can actually do *comedy*. I mean, like, who knew? But he can, and did, with great gusto. The nature of his character was anchored in a scene in his church (he’s the local Panawave-equivalent) in which he preaches, buck nekkid and skin-studded with creepy nano-gizmos, to a congragation of adoring female NAS victims. He delivers a bombastic, faux-Sterlingesque, literally balls-out *sermon* on the virtues of posthumanity. It came off sort of like Fabio as the Jesus you wouldn’t want to meet in a dark alley. It *rocked*. Hilarious. So Sony cut it.

They cut it out of fear of offending the religious right. No kidding. They actually told me that. That’s the sort of thing I mean when I say the JM you see is not the movie we shot.

[JM as I wrote it, and Longo shot it, is only available as the published screenplay (but quite readily available as that). I only agreed to publish it, in the first place, because I wanted to be in the position to demonstrate the difference between what I wrote, and we shot, and what they released. I doubt there’s even a remote possibility of there ever being a restored “director’s cut”, although the Japanese version of the DVD is a little closer to our intention.]


Author: Staff Writer

Thirty-something graphic designer trapped in a boring part of Florida.

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