Kevin Smith is so eager to get Clerks III out there for the fans that he's already finished the first cut of the anticipated sequel. Though Smith had been trying for many years to get the third Clerks movie off the ground, there was always one problem or another standing in his way. The stars finally aligned over the summer with Lionsgate picking up the rights to the series, giving Smith and his team a month to shoot Clerks 3 at the original Quick Stop Groceries location.

During production, Kevin Smith had regularly kept fans updated on the progress of Clerks III. Clearly, he is just as excited as many longtime fans of the filmmaker are for this movie to be released. Posting a new image to social media, revealing a new peek at Jay and Silent Bob in front of RST Video, Smith revealed that the first cut is in the can and ready to be reviewed by the brass at Lionsgate this week. Even better news revealed by Smith is that his canine pal Marty is doing well after a health scare. You can check out the post below.

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"I spent all of last week waking up at 4am to take care of our aging dog Marty, which in turn had me editing early, thus breaking my daily 7 mile hike habit for a full week. The bad news is that I'm pudgy from all the eating and lack of exercising. The good news? a) Marty is still with us and b) I am done with the first cut of Clerks III! The flick came in at 1 hour and 48 minutes, but yesterday I surgically removed another 3 minutes, bringing the current cut to 1 hour and 45 minutes. Clerks II was 1 hour and 37 minutes, but we have way more story to tell this time."

Smith also goes on to praise the cast of the upcoming sequel. Clerks III brings back several returning stars from the first two movies, delivering what Kevin Smith promises is their best acting yet.

"Happy to report that thanks to my killer cast, the flick is funny as fuck and incredibly emotional! My boys Brian O'Halloran & Jeff Anderson (the Vladimir & Estragon of Quick Stop Groceries) not only gave career-best performances for one of my movies - they gave two of the best performances I've ever seen in any movie in my entire life! Rosario Dawson brings Becky back brilliantly, and Jay Mewes, Trevor Fehrman and Austin Zajur steal so many scenes, I oughta have them arrested! I hope to show our Lionsgate partners the flick this Friday, and then all the friends and family living room screenings can kick in, so I can keep finding trims."

Finally, Kevin Smith reminisces on the many years spent dreaming about developing the movie. For his part, he's just stoked that it's turned out even better than he had been hoping for. In fact, he describes Clerks III as the best movie he's ever made so far.

"And having seen the somewhat finished-for-now first cut, I'm elated to report the film is everything I always dreamed it could be, ever since the ending of Clerks II! Sh*t, it's even better than I'd hoped it could be. It's not only a paean to outsider art in general and the transformative power of cinema specifically, the flick allowed me to recreate scenes from my first film, in the same place we shot the scenes 28 years ago! I can't wait to take you back to Jersey, Kids, with what I feel is my finest film to date! But after a week alone at a desk in a dark editing room that also doubles as a hot-box, now it's time to get out there and hike a few miles!"

Lionsgate doesn't have a release date set for Clerks III, but with the first cut in the can, let's hope an announcement isn't too far off. In the meantime, we can expect Kevin Smith will continue to keep fans updated on social media. Even if he's not even supposed to be there today.