Ice Cube, the legendary rapper-turned-actor, has found his true calling; campaigning for the release of The Schumacher Cut. The former member of N.W.A has shared a short video calling for AT&T and HBO Max to release Joel Schumacher's director's cut of Batman Forever, something that was revealed to exist earlier this year.
"The people want the Batman Forever director's cut release. That's it, just release the director's cut. Release the Schumacher cut....People want more Val Kilmer."
The video is in aid of the #ReleaseTheSchumacherCut social media campaign, and, as is sometimes the case with these fan endeavours, Ice Cube was reportedly paid for putting his voice to the cause. Still, sometimes your personal and financial desires collide, and having someone of Ice Cube's profile calling for The Schumacher Cut is sure to provide the campaign with a lot of publicity.
Released in 1995, Batman Forever follows Val Kilmer in his first and only appearance as Batman/Bruce Wayne, as he ponders strange dreams about his parents' death. While battling his own inner demons he finds himself up against two merciless villains, Two-Face, a former district attorney driven insane and turned into a master criminal after acid is thrown in his face, and Wayne Enterprises employee Edward Nygma, who reacts badly to getting fired and uses his self-invented mind-energy device to transform into the super-intelligent Riddler. The Riddler teams up with Two-Face to bring down Batman, leading Batman to form an alliance of his own.
Batman Forever stars Tommy Lee Jones as Harvey Dent / Two-Face, Jim Carrey as Edward Nygma / The Riddler, Nicole Kidman as Dr. Chase Meridian, Chris O'Donnell as Dick Grayson / Robin, Michael Gough as Alfred Pennyworth, and Pat Hingle as James Gordon.
The surprising news regarding the existence of a so-called Schumacher Cut of Batman Forever was revealed by writer and podcaster Marc Bernardin back in July. "I have it on pretty good authority that there exists in the Warner Bros. vault a 170-minute cut of Batman Forever," Bernadin said. "I think that it went much deeper into his childhood psychosis and his mental blocks and that it was a more serious, darker version of that movie that was one of the first assemblies that Joel Schumacher filed with the studio and they eventually cut it down because they were like 'it's too dark for kids. We gotta sell these Happy Meals, so maybe let's not invest ourselves in the trauma of childhood murder. We've got Jim Carrey, let him do some s-t."
Following director Tim Burton's gothic take on the Caped Crusader in both Batman and Batman Returns, the theatrical cut of Batman Forever takes things back to the campy silliness of the 1960s television series. According to Bernardin, Schumacher did in fact craft something that was much darker in nature than what audiences got to see in theaters.
Some of the deleted scenes from Schumacher's extended cut are available online, including a scene that pits Val Kilmer's Bruce Wayne against a giant bat. Descriptions of other deleted scenes reveal extended scenes with the movie's villains. The theatrical cut of Batman Forever hints at some deeper psychological elements, but these are never fully explored. So, the potential release of a Schumacher Cut that does flesh out these ideas is surely something that fans would want to see, as well as being a fitting tribute to the late director.
With a lot of effort being poured into The Snyder Cut, which is set to be released in 2021 on HBO Max, could The Schumacher Cut be next in line? This comes to us from Twitter user @CutSchumacher.