Today we have released the all-new version of Iron Sky, titled Director’s Cut. This version, 20 minutes longer, fitted with more visual effects from Troll, new music from Laibach, and all new scenes featuring Götz Otto, Julia Dietze, Udo Kier and all the other crazy characters of the Iron Sky universe, is the ultimate take on Iron Sky. But why call it Diretor’s Cut? Why didn’t we release this version on theaters? What’s so new about this take? And last, but not least – how do I get it?
Let me address these questions one by one. First, the name – Director’s Cut. The original version, which I’ll call Theatrical Version from now on, was just as much director’s version as this one, but this version is closer to the original vision of the film, which was the cut down for several reasons before the theatrical premiere.
The reasons were both time and money. We didn’t have enough time to finish the film to hit the Berlin premiere in February’12, so we decided to cut some corners and focus on getting the film out. Second, as you know, we were always tight on money, and we just didn’t have enough resources to finish some of the more complex sequences with adequate quality. But it’s not to say that the Theatrical Version would’ve been anyhow lesser or minor version of the film; the two versions are quite different and it’s interesting to find out which one you will prefer. Theatrical Version is much faster paced and dashes on relentlessly, where Director’s Cut takes a little more buildup, staying a bit longer on scenes on the Moon and establishing the characters, thus rendering the pace to a more epic and grander scale movie. Both have their pros and cons. I prefer the Director’s Cut.
So, what’s new then? Well, first, we went back to the original script and storyboards and decided to slam together several scenes we had skipped in the storyboard phase, and finish them. Most of that stuff was already somehow planned, either as animatics or simple scribblings on paper, but our adamant idea was to not to bring anything new to the film that wasn’t there in the planning stage. This meant, of course, a lot of more work to Troll, the VFX company of Iron Sky, who finished the visuals in an amazingly beautiful way.
Then, we opened the very first cut of the film, slammed together by Suresh Ayyar, our editor, and pulled in scenes we felt that would fit the film that had ended up on the cutting room’s floor for whatever reason. We were giggling through a lot of awesome stuff, and decided to bring in most of the scenes – there were few bits we knew were left out for good reason, but mostly the stuff was just too brilliant not to tuck in. Then, we sat down with editor Iikka Hesse in Finland and took a new stab on the material, trimming and squeezing it, finishing with almost 20 minutes longer cut of the film.
Last but not least, we of course needed a lot more music, so we contacted Laibach and introduced them to the idea of composing new music to the film. They, of course, were interested, but the process proved to be a bit more complex than we expected. Adding to music is much different than just putting new material in here, adding few beats there – basically, much of the stuff had to be either completely re-composed or at least had to be torn open and put back together from much bigger portions than just the added new material.
We then finished the sound with our sound designer Heiko Müller in Münich, color-graded in James Post in Finland and — well, here we are! All new shiny version of Iron Sky is now out, and we are eager to hear your thoughts! You may post them either to our Facebook page, or as a comment here – I really want to know what you thought of the new version of the film, especially those who’ve seen the first version, and which one you prefer?
The last question that remains is: where to get Director’s Cut. Well, the answer is Netflix Nordic. If you don’t have Netfix and you live in Finland, Sweden, Norway or Denmark, now is a great time to get it. I can’t appraise enough the service, and premiering Iron Sky there is a great honor for us.
We are right now opening the discussion with our distributors on getting the new version available on Blu-Ray and DVD, and hopefully even on a small theatrical run – and will keep you informed! So stay tuned!