Duncan Jones' First Cut Of 'Warcraft' Was Two Hours And 40 Minutes Long

Co-writer/director Duncan Jones' adaptation of Warcraft, Blizzard's online role-playing game, is a huge movie that juggles multiple characters and storylines. But the two-hour fantasy film is arguably too brisk, and could use more breathing room to tell its ensemble story. An early cut of the movie was two hours and 40 minutes in length, and perhaps that extended version fleshed out certain side characters and conflicts — where the film is sometimes lacking, according to some of the early reviews.

Below, learn more about the Warcraft deleted scenes.

Speaking with Collider, Jones told them that his first cut was 40 minutes longer than the theatrical version, but that very little of what got deleted was essential to the narrative:

It wasn't crazy [the length of the first cut]. There's a lot of great stuff that wasn't in the final cut of the film, and there will be DVDs and Blu-rays, where we can hopefully add those scenes. It was probably about two hours and 40 minutes. It was not a crazy length. Just for the sheer scale of this film – and it's a big, robust fantasy – you have to be really judicious about how you're going to shoot it, so there isn't that much fluff in the editing room. You know, "This is the stuff I absolutely need to tell the story." Two hours and 40 minutes down to a little over two hours feels like a pretty reasonable contraction. It was more trimming. There are one or two storyline elements that are not as explained as they used to be. A lot of people who are Warcraft fans continue to wonder, "If Garona (Paul Patton) is half-orc, how can she be half-human?" There is a good reason for that, but the detail of that is more in the scenes that we weren't able to put into the film.

Anyone that's unfamiliar with the games likely won't be lost by the "half-orc, half-human" question. The director didn't elaborate on why he couldn't keep those scenes in the finished film, but it's likely for pacing and theater count reasons. In the editing room, Jones also had to lose a reference to his past work. In an interview with The Daily Beast, the director told them about a deleted Easter egg:

If you know Moon or Source Code, there's this very sweet, very talented guy named Chesney Hawks who wrote this really, really big hit in Britain called 'I Am The One And Only. I used it as an alarm clock in Moon, and a ring tone in Source Code—and I actually got him to do a version as a bard in Warcraft. We weren't able to keep it in the cut. But somehow, maybe, I'll just sneak it into the Twitterverse... he did a Warcraft-medievally version of his single, and it's just brilliant. Unfortunately I was the only one who thought it was hilarious.

In that same interview with The Daily Beast, Jones was asked about his late father, David Bowie, and his reaction to Warcraft. The director responded:

I showed him an early cut of this and showed him some of the effects shots. You know, for everyone else he was one person. For me, he was my dad. And he was always interested in things I was working on. So I showed him what I was working on, and he was all excited for me and happy that I was doing the thing that I enjoyed doing in my life.

Bowie passed away back in January. Most outlets have been respectful not to ask Jones too much about his father's passing while he's promoting a movie, but of course, the question is bound to come up. The New York Times, in fact, published a rather respectful and touching piece on what Jones went through during the making-of his third feature film.

Warcraft opens in theaters June 10th.