Batman Forever fans are campaigning for director Joel Schumacher’s original cut of the film to be released for the film’s 26th anniversary.
The hashtag #ReleaseTheSchumacherCut has been used on social media as a call to action, in a similar vein to the successful #ReleaseTheSnyderCut campaign.
Batman Forever was released under Warner Bros. in 1995. Although directed by Schumacher, the studio made significant changes to the final film, which included cutting around 50 minutes of footage. Included in that footage was a scene in which Val Kilmer’s Bruce Wayne came face-to-face with a six-foot bat.
The film hailed a move into lighter material within the Batman canon, following on from the films of Tim Burton. Batman Forever co-starred Nicole Kidman and Jim Carrey as the villainous Riddler.
Following Schumacher’s death in June 2020, rumours surfaced that the “darker” and “longer” cut did exist, as reported by Variety.
A source close to the publication confirmed that the extended cut opened with a sequence involving the villain Two-Face (Tommy Lee Jones) escaping from Arkham Asylum, and featured additional scenes with the Riddler.
In April, screenwriter Akiva Goldsman spoke at the Austin Film Festival, and commented on having recently seen Schumacher’s original version. Goldsman said that he felt the film “sort of still has a renaissance coming”.
“I’m really interested to see whether the original cut of Batman Forever comes out,” he added.
Warner Bros. has made no comment on releasing the extended cut of the film.
Kilmer made headlines this week in light of the recent Batman and Catwoman oral sex debate.
After Justin Halpern and Patrick Schumacker said DC made them scrap an oral sex scene between Batman and Catwoman in the animated Harley Quinn series, fans took to social media to weigh in.
Amongst them was Kilmer. “Does he or doesn’t he…?” the actor tweeted, sharing a GIF from Batman Forever.