SPOILER ALERT: The next article comprises spoilers for the film Downsizing. When you have not but seen the movie, and do not want to know particulars in regards to the ending, please bookmark this web page and put it aside till after your screening!
The primary act of Alexander Payne’s Downsizing is fairly straight ahead — serving to not solely set up the historical past of the science behind the titular course of, but in addition clarify the way it wound up changing the world. If the director had his druthers, nonetheless, it might have had a really totally different opening that might have been set 5000 years sooner or later. Discussing scenes that did not make the lower, Payne lately instructed me in an interview,
There have been just a few scenes, and a framing gadget – that each one of that is being instructed like a fantasy from tiny folks 5000 years sooner or later. The massive extinction did come, wiped everybody out, after which we choose up the story with the tiny individuals who have repopulated the planet popping out of the vault 5000 years sooner or later. And an previous storyteller is telling kids round a campfire, ‘Years in the past, the world was dominated by giants.’ ‘Ohhh!’ ‘However the giants had been at all times hungry, and so they fished all of the seas, and killed all of the animals, and burned down all of the forests, and made the world unbearably scorching!’ ‘Ohhh!’ After which he begins to inform the story of Paul Safranek.
Final month, I had the nice pleasure of sitting down with Alexander Payne for an interview through the Los Angeles press day for Downsizing, and it was whereas speaking in regards to the edit of the film that he introduced up the deleted framing gadget that did not make it into the theatrical lower. Recognizing that the movie has a large runtime of two hours and 15 minutes, I inquired how a lot materials hit the chopping room flooring. He then defined how the film was initially designed to open utterly otherwise, following characters who come out of the aftermath of the movie’s ending.
Within the third act of Downsizing, Paul Safranek (Matt Damon) finds himself on a particular journey to Norway, the place he learns a few particular doomsday plan that has been devised by associates of the scientist who invented the shrinking process within the first place. They’ve constructed what’s mainly a large underground biosphere that may enable generations to stay on even after the planet died. As described by Alexander Payne, the framing gadget would have adopted the ancestors of those folks, who had heard tales handed down a few unusual man and his decisions within the time of Downsizing.
As for why this opening wasn’t included within the movie, the reply is strictly the one that you’d count on. The film is already pretty hefty within the runtime division, and Alexander Payne felt that it wanted to get the axe:
The movie was operating lengthy. I miss it, and I prefer it. We nonetheless may use it sooner or later. However the image was operating a bit of lengthy, and that is the essential reply.