A poster for Frederick Stephani and Ray Taylor's 1936 science fiction film 'Flash Gordon' starring Buster Crabbe. (Photo by Movie Poster Image Art/Getty Images)
Movies - TV
Flash Gordon Originally Had Much Grander Ambitions For Its Big Finale
Sci-fi fans have mixed feelings about the 1980 film “Flash Gordon,” but the late Mike Hodge’s adaptation of the popular comic strip was undoubtedly distinct and visually impressive for the times. The film’s ending was arguably on par with the “Star Wars” films, albeit with a campy tone, but the final cut’s conclusion was a trimmed version of Hodge’s grander vision.
Author and filmmaker John Walsh revealed some major details about the scrapped ending in his book “Flash Gordon: The Official Story of the Film.” Walsh explained, “Where the film ends now, at the wedding crashing, that was the start of a new major sequence that was going to involve Ming turning into fabulous creatures and fighting Flash, the Hawkmen, and the Arboria Tree Men.”
Although the film had an extraordinarily high cost for the time, preventing some ideas from making their way into the film, the “Flash Gordon” production team had to cut the final sequence due to time restrictions. Walsh explained, “Literally, the pages were pulled. They were like ‘No time for that, haven’t got time for that.’ They had the money for it, but no time.”