Monday, June 12, 2017

Strange History: Phantasm's Accidentally Deleted Scene

Here's a bit of strange franchise trivia: Did you know that Phantasm's early videotape releases had an accidentally deleted scene? It's true! The technicians that transferred to the film to its original home video master tapes mistakenly trimmed the scene when the spacegate room goes dark and Reggie whispers, "Jody? Where are ya? Mike?" Then we hear a dwarf snarl and Reggie mutters, "Oh shit."

Why would they snip this brief scene? It unfortunately fell at the end of a reel change. Being that the spacegate room goes completely dark, the screen goes black even though Reggie's dialogue continues on. To the uninformed video tech, a blank screen meant that the reel had ended. They then switched over to the next reel, cutting off the scene. 

This mistake was eventually corrected when the film was re-relased onto home video by MGM in the 90's. Packaging on the newer tapes boasted that they contained the film's "original theatrical version," which they now did. These tapes not only reinstated the missing scene, but also included four minutes of intentionally deleted scenes after the film presentation.

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