The holidays have come early for fans of Stephen King’s The Shining sequel Doctor Sleep. After news broke that Warner Bros. is releasing an extended director’s cut of Doctor Sleep on Blu-ray, DVD, and Digital HD, director Mike Flanagan shared details on what the new version of the film would entail.
In a statement obtained by Collider, the Haunting of Hill House filmmaker shared that the new cut would be “more literary” than what was released in theaters and “very much feels like reading a novel. “I’m really excited that WB let me create this cut, much less release it,” Flanagan writes. “They really supported it — to the point that they made sure all of the new material with VFX was fully finished, additional score was composed and orchestrated just for this cut, and we did a full mix as well. They really let us do this right — it’s a finished, complete, fully polished new cut of the movie. Nothing in it is temp.”
Teasing “new material throughout the whole film,” Flanagan reveals that “some of it is brand new stuff that was never included in the theatrical cut, and there’s also a handful of extended (or altered) scenes as well.”
“There was never any intention to release this cut theatrically, we always knew it was too long,” he continues. “But we worked on it alongside the theatrical cut throughout post, and it made it a lot easier to make hard decisions in the edit, knowing that some day this cut might see the light of day.”
As for what those scenes include, Flanagan says “there are some big new scenes, for sure.”
“I don’t want to spoil any of that, but I can say that there is new material throughout (including in the final act at the Overlook),” he writes. “Some of my favorite stuff involved Young Danny and Wendy (there’s some terrific material with Alex Essoe that I’m thrilled is restored here), and will be familiar to fans of the book. There’s also a fair amount of new stuff involving young Abra in the film’s first act, learning about her shine, and how it affects her parents. And there are some surprises I definitely won’t spoil here.”
Find out what those surprises are when Doctor Sleep — both the theatrical and director’s cut — is released digitally on Jan. 21 and on Blu-ray and 4KUHD on Feb. 4.