The movie's theatrical version, represented by the German special edition DVD by Touchstone, has been compared to the director's cut on the US-DVD released by Criterion.
Theatrical Cut (PAL): 144:40 min. (138:02 min)
Director's Cut (NTSC): 153:14 min. (146:23 min)
11 differences, extending the director's cut 2:36 minutes.
The scene showing Rockhound with the loan shark is probably a censorhip to get a PG-13 rating. There are several films which contain two or more "fucks", but Armageddon was obviously only supposed to have one. Truman used that one later at a more important part. Bay or Bruckheimer did not say anything about this in the audio commentary. The longer scene with Harry, saying goodbye to the father, was cut, so the movie would not reach the critical length that would force the film to be shown one less time a day, at least Bruce Willis supposes this in the audio commentary, and it sounds logical. The little inconspicuous change with the missing first shot on A.J. in the beginning is unfortunately not commented on, because Bay is busy explaining why he wasn't satisfied with Ben Affleck's teeth and therefore send him to a dentist.
16:29 | 15:50
AJ is hiding behind a pipe. The director's cut features a little more of a shot in the beginning.
16:31 | 15:50
Subsequently to the shot, Harry only just misses AJ in the theatrical cut.
So in the Director's Cut, Harry only shoots once at AJ and only after the following dialogue, which differs in the two versions.
AJ: Harry! Harry! Harry! Harry, hey, just cool down. [1. shot] What are you - Okay, stop. All right, all right, Harry. All right. Now, listen, man to man. I'm serious. I love her.
Harry: Way wrong answer. [2. shot]
51:21 | 49:26
Rockhound lends 100.000 Dollars from the loan shark. The "bureau" is shown a moment longer in the DC.
Subsequently, there is alternative footage. The director's cut is longer.
The reason for this change is an alternate dialogue.
Vic (loan shark): This is a pretty big loan. Why don't you count the cash.
Rockhound: Nah, this looks like a 100 grand to me.
Vic: I'm givin' you this at 60 percent. I hope you know what you're doin', because if I gotta come lookin' for you, I'm gonna hit you in the head with a fuckin' sledgehammer. because I'll bust your head with a sledgehammer.
Rockhoud: No, no, no. I'm solid. You'll get your money back.
Vic: You don't look too healthy. You're not gonna die on me, are ya?
Rockhound: Let's just say, no more than you are. Thanks, Vic.
DC: 6s | TC: 2.5s
51:44 | 49:38
Subsequently, the director's cut features Oscar praying in church.
Oscar: You know you don't have to worry about me, 'cause I'm gonna do my best. But I'm a little worried about my guys. If you could just throw in some Hail Marys -- Throw in a lot of Hail Marys. And just gib them a little juice. That extra "uh" to kinda get 'em over the top.
DC + 14,5s
55:20 | 52:51
Harry visits his father.
Harry: Eddie? How you doing, Gramp?
Eddie: Ah, you know. Pills every four hours. Jello every five. Goddamn Jello. Pudding for sissies. [Harry laughs] Go ahead and laugh. Layin' around, I got dead men on my ass. That ain't me.
Harry: I know that.
Eddie: I'm ready to go to work. You got a job comin up'?
Harry: Yeah, Dad, I got a big one comin' up.
Eddie: Well, I'm your man, Harry. You know me. All go, no quit. That's me. Got my boots, my gloves. Just say the word, kid. -- How's my granddaugter?
Harry: She's good. Sends her love. She's giving me a hard time, though.
Eddie: You know, Harry, God gave us children so we'd have roses in December.
Harry: Love you, Dad.
Eddie: Stop all that shit. If you love me, give me some pudding.
Harry: I'll see what I can do.
Eddie: Okay, kid.
Harry: Take care of yourself, all right?
Eddie: You too.
Harry: All right.
59:29 | 55:34
After the comet's impact in China, Harry and Dan talk. The director's cut has two extensions here.
Harry gives Dan some coffee as he says that he can remember all the names from his first year at NASA. The theatircal cut shows the end of this shot and the beginning of the next one slightly longer.
The director's cut on the other hand extends Dan's explanation from the beginning of his career.
Dan: Thanks. Twenty-two years later. Of course, things were different then. It wasn't so much about the paperwork and the politics. It was all about getting the job done. I went into the engineering programme.
60:06 | 55:56
At the end of the dialogue, the director's cut features another shot extension.
Dan: I tell you, I'd be on that shuttle with you, Harry, if I could.
Harry: You don't want to be up in that shuttle any more than I do.
Dan: You scared?
Harry: Yeah. -- You?
Harry:Well, good look in Florida tomorrow.
77:00 | 72:00
Rockhound and Oscar annoy Lev as the first two shuttles are fueled up.
Rockhound: How long have you been up here on your own, man?
Lev: Uh, eighteen months now.
Rockhound: That's a long-ass time.
Oscar: Lev, I am so sorry about all the upheaval and strife in your country. Man, that must be tough up here with the loneliness. But I want you to know that up here there are no Russians and there are no Americans, we're just spacemen.
Men in the background: We got it, we got it!
[Lev looks dumbfounded after Oscar's comment]
Oscar: I'm gonna check down there with these guys.
136:45 | 128:48
There are alternative shots as Harry says goodbye to his daughter, because he talks about his father in the director's cut. The differences spread across two blocks, seperated by an identical view of Grace. The following dialogue sprawls over both blocks, though.
Harry: I went to see your granddad just before I come up here, Grace, and he told me that God gives us children so that we could have roses in December. Well, you gave me a garden full. A whole garden full, Gracie. You really did.
I want you to take care of A.J.
DC +14s | TC +11s
137:00 | 129:00
The part of Harry's farewell in which he says, he would have loved to lead her to the altar uses partly different takes, but is identical word by word.
DC +9s | TC +2s