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Dawn of the Dead


  • US Theatrical Version (Romero Cut)
  • Extended Cut
Release: Mar 05, 2017 - Author: Tony Montana - Translator: Tony Montana - external link: IMDB
Compared are the US Theatrical Version (Romero Cut) and the Extended Cut (Cannes Cut) (both available on the US "Ultimate Edition" by Anchor Bay).

63 differences, consisting of
- 45 additional scenes
- 15 extended scenes
- 2 scenes with additional footage and alternate audio track
- 1 scene with alternate footage and alternate audio track
- Length difference: 738.7 sec resp. 12 min 18.7 sec

When thinking of George A. Romero's Dawn of the Dead, words like classic or masterpiece instantaneously come to mind. Not only is it one of the best zombie flicks ever made but it is also a must see for everyone who does not hate the zombie genre. There are many versions but the two most important ones are the US Theatrical Version (aka "Romero Cut") and the European Theatrical Version (aka "Argento Cut"). But over the years, several other versions had been edited which brings me to this comparison. One of said versions is the so-called Extended Cut (aka Cannes Cut") which - as already implied by its name - is a longer version that had been edited by Romero himself in order to show this masterpiece in Cannes. It is also known as "Director's Cut" but frankly, I find that name a little confusing since both the US Theatrical Version and the Extended Cut are versions edited by Romero himself. Despite the length difference of 12 minutes, the differences between the US Theatrical Version and the Extended Cut are not that huge. The additional plot is nice, especially the scenes inside the mall, and there is a bit more violence as well but that is it. All in all, the US Theatrical Version definately does the trick but the Extended Cut is a nice addition for fans.

Time index refers to
US Theatrical Version / Extended Cut (both in NTSC)

Additional Scene
03:02 / 03:02

The TV discussion about how to handle the bodies is longer. To be more specific, Dr. Foster's statement is longer.
Dr. Foster: "A dead body must be exterminated either by destroying the brain or severing the brain from the rest of the body."
The people at the studio are upset about his statement. As a result, the doc addresses them directly.
Dr. Foster: "The situation must be controlled before it's too late."
Due to the upset people, one can only hear the last words of the doc's subsequent comment: "…multiplying too rapidly!"

17.3 sec

Additional Scene
04:42 / 04:59

After Stephen's arrival at the studio, there is an additional comment by the doc - including an intercut to Mr. Berman.
Dr. Foster: "Should we be unable to check the spread because of the emotional attitude of the citizens because issues of morality."

6.7 sec

Additional Scene / Recut / Alternate Audio Track
05:01 / 05:25

Additional shot of Dr. Foster.
Dr. Foster: "(Citizens will be moved in the central areas of the city.) The bodies of the dead will be delivered over to specially equipped squad of the national guard (to organize disposition)."
Slightly afterwards, this additional shot is also in the US Theatrical Version as alternate footage but I will get to that.

On a related note, I would like to point out that the audio differs as well: The dialog in brackets is audible during the identical shots of Francine and Mr. Berman. Then the additional shot of Dr. Foster, followed by a shot of Stephen and some other people during which the last words of Dr. Foster are audible (also in brackets).

In the US Theatrical Version however, one now gets to hear Dr. Foster's comment which had been used slightly earlier in the Extended Version (please see 03:02 / 03:02): He explains what to do with the bodies. This goes for both the footage before and after the additional shot of Dr. Foster. In other words: In the US Theatrical Version, said comment is audible during the shots of Francine, Mr. Berman and Stephen.
Dr. Foster (aus dem Off): "A dead body must be exterminated either by destroying the brain or severing the brain from the rest of the body."

Screenshots to illustrate the (entire) scene
US Theatrical VersionExtended Cut

6,2 sec

Alternate Footage / Recut / Alternate Audio Track
05:40 / 06:11

The US Theatrical Version here contains the shot of Dr. Foster from the Extended Version (please see 05:01 / 05:25).
The Extended Version contains his following comment - the part is brackets is off-screen though resp. audible during the two previous and the subsequent shots.
Dr. Foster: "(Citizens will be moved in the central areas of the city.) The bodies of the dead will be delivered over to specially equipped squad of the national guard (to organize disposition)."

The US Theatrical Version lacks both the beginning and ending of that. To be more specific, the US Theatrical Version only contains the bold-marked part of the comment plus the Doc only speaks the underlined part on-screen. The previous part is audible during the previous shot of Francine (in the Extended Version, one only gets to hear indistinct comments from the crowd in the background).
Dr. Foster: "Citizens will be moved in the central areas of the city. The bodies of the dead will be delivered over to specially equipped squad of the national guard to organize disposition."

In the Extended Cut, an additional shot of the moon follows the already mentioned shot of Francine (which for the record is 0.4 sec longer in the Extended Cut). Compared with the shot of Dr. Foster, the shot os the moon is slightly shorter - hence the insignificant length difference we have here.

Screenshots to illustrate the entire scene

US Theatrical Version 0.1 sec longer
US Theatrical VersionExtended Cut

Additional Scene
05:55 / 06:28

Additional shot in the Extended Version.

1.9 sec

Extended Scene
06:03 / 06:38

The shot of Roger startss earlier. He tells the negotiator what to say to the gangsters via megaphone.
Negotiator: "(We don't want any of them hurt.) Neither do you."
Roger: "I'm giving you 3 minutes, Martinez."
Negotiator: "I'm giving you 3 minutes, Martinez. Turn over your weapons and surrender."
Roger: "There's no charges against you."
(Negotiator: "There are no charges against you or any of your people.")

10 sec

Additional Scene
07:46 / 08:31

Roger puts on his gas mask. Several shot of S.W.A.T. on their way inside the house follow.

8.8 sec

Additional Scene
11:54 / 12:47

While the Theatrical Versions ends with Roger sitting down and looking for his cigarettes in his pocket, there is some additional dialog in the Extended Cut.
Roger: "You running? I don't mean because of Woley. I mean 'cause of all this…"
Peter: "Yeah. Yeah, I know."
When Roger puts a cigarette in his mouth, the versions are back in sync.

16.2 sec

Additional Scene
15:43 / 16:52

Roger kills the zombie in front of Peter on the ground. The US Theatrical Version then continues with the soldier busting the door in the wall open.
In the Extended Version, they look at each other for a brief moment and Peter makes a "Thank you" gesture. Roger leaves and further zombies are being shot - including cuts to Peter pulling the trigger. Starting with the dead zombies on the ground, the camera pans to the top of the room. Now, the soldier busts open the door in the Extended Version as well.

17.6 sec

Additional Scene
16:24 / 17:52

Stephen and Francine land on the rooftop.
Stephen: "Come on. I need you."
They get out of the chopper.
Stephen: "I don't see Roger. We'll give him 10 minutes."
Francine spots a body on the ground and gets scared.
Francine: "Stephen!"
Stephen: "I know. Just wait right here."
Stephen gets the hose and starts filling up the chopper with gas. He then hands the hose over to Francine.
Stephen: "Just like that. Like on a car. Just hold it there till it spits out at you."
Francine remains behind all by herself because Stephen takes a look around inside. Then Francine again, followed by a shot of the body on the ground.

78.1 sec

Additional Scene
16:41 / 19:27

Two little additional shots show the action on the rooftop.

4.4 sec

Additional Scene
16:48 / 19:38

Two additional shots of Stephen and Francine.
(Stephen: "I hope that's Roger.")
Francine: "What are you doing?"
Stephen: "I'll be right there."
Stephen then rushes back inside.

2.3 sec

Additional Scene
16:51 / 19:43

Now a longer scene with the thugs on the rooftop. While holding Stephen and Francine at gunpoint, they help themselves as they please. Francine gets a little scared when the thugs show up. One of them starts a coversation.
Thug: "Just stay cool."
Stephen appears and one of the other thugs points his gun at him.
Thug #2: "Hello."
Thug: "C'mon, skipper. They got friends coming."
Thug #2 (to Stephen): "Who are you?"
Stephen: "We're with J.A.S. We…"
Thug: "About a minute and a half on the car."
Stepehen is pushed outside, he tries to smooth things over.
Stephen: "Now wait a minute. We're just here to refuel. Those men were already dead. You were here, you know that."
Thug #2: "J.A.S. traffic watch. Steve Andrews."
Stephen: "That's me. I'm Steve Andrews."
Thug #2: "No shit."
Thug #3: "We get a lot further in this bird, skipper."
Thug: "Can't all fit."
Thug #2: "How many will that thing hold?"
Thug #3: "Hey, man. I ain't going nowhere in nothing. I can't drive myself."
Thug: "That's true. Something happens to him and we'll be stuck. We'll be stuck! Stick with the boat!"
Thug #3: "We get a lot further in this bird."
At this point, one of the thugs spots Peter and Roger getting closer in a squad car.
Thug #4: "Hey, that's a squad car."
Everybody turns their head.
Thug #2: "That's OK, we're police."
Thug: "Bullshit, man! Let's get to the boat!"
Thug #2 (to Stephen): "You're running, ain't ya? You and your friends are running in the J.A.S. traffic bird."

67 sec resp. 1 min 7 sec

Additional Scene
16:54 / 20:53

After the small, identical shot of the squad car pulling up, there is some more additional footage.
Roger gets out of the squad car.
Roger: "What's the problem, Officer?"
Thug #2: "We caught your friend here stealing company gasoline."
Roger: "What do you mean 'friends'?"
Stephen: "They know, Roge. They're running, too."
Thug #2: "Now, it'd be crazy to start shooting at one another, wouldn't it?"
Roger: "Sure would."

24.5 sec

Additional Scene
18:07 / 22:33

The boat is leaving. A scene that takes place inside the chopper follows.
Peter: "Are any of you leaving people behind?"
Francine: "An ex-husband."
Roger: "An ex-wife."
Stephen (from the background): "You, Peter?"
Peter: "Some brothers."

13.2 sec

Additional Scene
18:19 / 22:58

Additional conversation between Francine and Peter in the chopper. Francine refers to Peter's previous statement regarding his brothers he had to leave behind (please see 18:07 / 22:33). The US Theatrical Version only contains the last seconds of the final shot of Peter and Francine, followed by Peter's question regarding Roger which is also the moment the versions are back in sync.
Francine: " Are those… real brothers? You know, real brothers or street brothers?"
Peter: "Both."
Francine: "How many real ones?"
Peter: "Two."
Francine: "Two."
Peter nods, then he explains: "One's in jail. The other's a pro ball player. But we catch up to each other once in a while."

35.8 sec

Additional Scene
24:17 / 29:32

Additional shots of Roger and Stephen getting the rifles from the chopper.

6.7 sec

Extended Scene
24:30 / 29:51

The scene with Peter shooting the zombie kids is longer.
In the US Theatrical Version, there is a single final shot of Peter, followed by the exterior shot of Stephen.
In the Extended Version, Peter keeps shooting at the zombie kids. One gets to the bullets hit the zombie kids and the Extended Version also cuts back to Peter firing off the shots. Not until then, we get to see the final shot of Peter and subsequently Stephen.

2.8 sec

Additional Scene
26:08 / 31:33

After their little argument, Peter helps Stephen get back on his feet. Then he leaves.

8.8 sec

Extended Scene
33:24 / 38:57

Francine longer.

2.9 sec

Additional Scene
33:28 / 39:05

Additional footage of Roger and Peter at the mall.
Roger (while he and Peter are hiding and watching the zombies): "It's christmas time down there, buddy."
Peter: "Fat city, brother. How we gonna work it?"
Roger: "We get into one of the department stores up here. They'll probably have their own escalators inside."
Peter: "Let's check those schems."

46 sec

Additional Scene
36:52 / 43:15

When Roger shoots a zombie, only the Extended Cut shows the bloody result.

1.3 sec

Extended Scene
54:31 / 01:00:55

Stephen slightly longer.

0.6 sec

Additional Scene / Alternate Audio Track
54:33 / 01:00:58

Then some additional dialog.
Francince: "Stephen, I'm afraid! You're hypnotized by this place. All of you! It's so bright and neatly wrapped that you don't see it's a prison, too. Stephen, let's just take what we need and keep going."
Stephen: "Do you know how many times we would have to land for fuel on our way up north?"
A shot of Stephen follows.

Now, Francine lights a cigarette in both versions. Except for the fact that the shot of Francine is slightly longer (0.8 sec), Stephen also keeps talking in the Extended Cut. The US Theatrical Version does not contain this comment.
Stephen: "Those things out there are everywhere. The authorities would give us just as hard a time. Maybe worse."
The beginning of his comment ("Those things out there") is audible during the last frames of the shot of him, the remaining part is audible during the following sht of Francine lighting a cigarette.

Screenshots to illustrate the scene

25 sec

Extended Scene
54:41 / 01:01:25

After Francine lights her cigarette (please see previous alteration), Stephen gets up and walks up to her which brings us right to the next alteration. In the US Theatrical Version, he simply says "Fran!" before he sits next to her.
In the Extended Cut, his comment is longer.
Stephen: "Fran! *kurze Pause* We've got everything we need right here!"
Not until now, he sits next to her in the Extended Cut.

14.2 sec

Extended Scene
54:44 / 01:01:40

The shot of Stephen sitting next to Fran is also longer. to be more specific, Stephen makes a little comment in the Extended Cut.
Stephen: "Let's get some sleep."

9.4 sec

Extended Scene
56:08 / 01:03:13

In the Extended Cut, "Eye Patch Guy" is a little longer on the screen.

1.2 sec

Additional Scene
56:14 / 01:03:20

The Extended Cut contains with the host. At first, one gets to see the host on the screen, followed by footage of Francine while the host keeps talking.
Host: "That was Doctor Millard Rush from the… eh… O.E.P. and eh… later on eh… hopefully today, we're not exactly sure yet, I'm waiting for word on this from some people… eh we expect to get in here for a live show, an actual live interview so we can discuss things with him."

19.6 sec

Extended Scene
01:00:20 / 01:07:46

Peter longer at the wheel of the truck.

1.2 sec

Additional Scene
01:00:21 / 01:07:49

Then two additional shots in the Extended Cut. The first one is an interior shot from Stephen's perspective when he is flying the chopper, the second one is an exterior shot of the chopper.

7.8 sec

Additional Scene
01:00:45 / 01:08:20

Additional shot of Peter in the truck. Then Francine on the rooftop, followed by a shot of Stephen resp. the chopper.

5.5 sec

Extended Scene
01:03:07 / 01:10:49

After Roger puts a bullet in some female zombie, she gets back inside the driver's cab in the Extended Cut and attacks Roger again.

4.6 sec

Additional Scene
01:03:15 / 01:11:02

After Peter engages a gear and drives off, the Extended Cut shows how he turns the truck around.

3.7 sec

Additional Scene
01:03:58 / 01:11:48

Additional footage of Peter wiping blood out of his face.

2.5 sec

Extended Scene
01:04:23 / 01:12:17

After Roger kills the zombie by the truck, a shot of Roger starts earlier. As a consequence thereof, the Extended Cut contains an additional comment.
Roger: "We got 'em, didn't we?"

6.1 sec

Additional Scene
01:06:06 / 01:14:06

Two additional shots in the Extended Cut. At first, a zombie loses his arm. Then an exterior shot of the truck surrounded by zombies.

2.4 sec

Additional Scene
01:06:45 / 01:14:48

Francine aims and pulls the trigger. A zombie goes down. A further shot of Francine on the rooftop follows.

2.9 sec

Extended Scene
01:06:45 / 01:14:51

The zombie who is about to get killed next a little earlier in the Extended Cut. However, both versions contain the actual kill shot.

0.5 sec

Additional Scene
01:08:31 / 01:16:38

Additional footage of Francine in action.

2.7 sec

Additional Scene
01:08:36 / 01:16:45

Shot of Roger tearing off some piece of cloth in order to wrap it around his wounded leg. Then a shot of Peter.

5 sec

Extended Scene
01:08:40 / 01:16:55

The shot of Peter starts earlier. His comment is identical though.

2.8 sec

Extended Scene
01:15:28 / 01:23:45

Stephen a little longer.

1.3 sec

Additional Scene
01:15:29 / 01:23:48

Additional shot of the zombies.

1.4 sec

Additional Scene
01:20:57 / 01:29:20

Additional shots of what is happening in the tool section.

11.4 sec

Additional Scene
01:23:53 / 01:32:28

Peter poses as cowboy in front of a mirror. Also, Roger is in the mood for some candy.

7.5 sec

Additional Scene
01:25:18 / 01:34:01

Now, they are having fun at the arcade.

4.9 sec

Additional Scene
01:34:37 / 01:43:25

Here, a longer sequence has been added. Anyone is enjoying themselves differently.

At the end of the sequence, there is a scene with Stephen and Francine in which the tension between them is quite obvious. Stephen takes a picture of Francine but she is not thrilled about it.
Francine: "Good. And when you've finished the role, we'll drop it off at the drugstore."
She then turns away and leaves, Stephen remains behind by himself.

75.4 sec

Additional Scene
01:42:18 / 01:52:21

Additional shots of the bikers.

7.7 sec

Additional Scene
01:44:09 / 01:54:20

Vans are being positioned strategically in front of the mall.

9.8 sec

Additional Scene
01:44:19 / 01:54:40

Some zombies get killed by the bikers. Then a scene with Tom Savini and two further people inside a van. A little conversation follows. Also, a zombie gets punched in the face by Savini.

34.6 sec

Additional Scene
01:44:44 / 01:55:39

Two additional shots in the Extended Cut.

2.4 sec

Extended Scene
01:44:44 / 01:55:42

The subsequent shot starts slightly earlier.

0.7 sec

Additional Scene
01:45:15 / 01:56:14

Peter takes cover.

2.1 sec

Additional Scene
01:45:20 / 01:56:21

Peter informs Stephen on the radio.
Peter: "Let's just let 'em fight if off. Get up on the balcony and stay out of sight. I'll meet you at the information."
Peter gets going. Stephen hesitates for a bit, then he gets to the information as well.

15.1 sec

Additional Scene
01:47:28 / 01:58:44

The bikers get armed.

10.2 sec

Additional Scene
01:47:32 / 01:58:58

One of the bikers (literally) keeps throwing money at another bike and comments on that from the off: "Come on, man, you're too slow!"

1.4 sec

Additional Scene
01:49:25 / 02:00:55

In the Extended Cut, more zombies get killed.

12.7 sec

Additional Scene
01:49:40 / 02:01:23

More zombies again. Some of them are being eliminated.

8.4 sec

Additional Scene
01:50:11 / 02:02:03

Time to loot.

7.4 sec

Additional Scene
01:53:12 / 02:05:11

After Peter kills Savini who winds up in the fountain, another biker starts shooting at Peter. For that reason, Peter splits.

3 sec

Extended Scene
01:53:12 / 02:05:14

A shot starts earlier: Again the biker who fired at Peter. A second biker shows up and says: "Come on, man. Let's get the hell outta here."
When said second biker fires off some shots as well, the versions arre back in sync.

2.1 sec

Additional Scene
01:53:30 / 02:05:34

Additional shots of the retreating bikers.

5.8 sec

Additional Scene
01:55:07 / 02:17:17

Some bikers on their bikes at first. Then some zombies feasting on their prey.

5.3 sec

Additional Scene
01:57:47 / 02:10:03

Last but not least, the Extended Cut contains additional footage of the zombies doing what they enjoy the most.

12 sec

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