Terrence Malick Working on TREE OF LIFE Director’s Cut; VOYAGE OF TIME Planned for 2014 Release

     May 1, 2013

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As if enigmatic filmmaker Terrence Malick didn’t already have enough on his plate with post-production work on two films he shot last year, it appears that he’s also retooling one of his past films as well.  The Days of Heaven director returned to the cinemas after a six year absence with 2011’s brilliant The Tree of Life, and subsequently began working at an incredibly quick pace as he shot and released this year’s To the Wonder and filmed two movies back-to-back—Knight of Cups and an untitled feature—throughout the latter half of last year.

Malick is known for taking his time (usually a year or two) in the editing room on his films given that he shoots a lot of footage and crafts the finished film in post-production, but in addition to editing his two recently shot films, editor Billy Weber reveals that Malick is also working on a director’s cut of Tree of Life.  Weber also notes that the director’s long-in-the-works documentary Voyage of Time is expected in 2014.  Hit the jump for more.

terrence-malick-tree-of-lifeRumors have swirled about a director’s cut of The Tree of Life for quite some time, as cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki previously revealed that they shot a great deal of footage that ended up on the cutting room floor, including many scenes that dealt with the film’s child characters.  Speaking with The Playlist, Malick’s longtime editor Billy Weber let slip that the filmmaker is tooling away on a director’s cut:

“I don’t even know the total [amount of footage that was shot], it was a huge amount of film, because he shot so many scenes. And I’m pretty sure he’s doing a director’s cut DVD of Tree Of Life, and that will have some of those scenes deleted [placed back] in. But for the theatrical release, he really thought that it was going to be too much, and he just couldn’t put it all in.”

While there’s no guarantee that a director’s cut of Tree of Life will see the light of day (there’s really no such thing as a guarantee when talking about Malick), I’d be thrilled to see a new version of the film with additional footage as crafted by Malick.  Previous rumors have put the runtime of the extended version of Tree of Life at around four hours, but many consider the introspective pic to be one of Malick’s best so I don’t think Malick diehards would be complaining.

Additionally, Malick has been working on a documentary called Voyage of Time for years that is said to be epic in scope as it traces the birth and death of the universe, and Weber suggests we could finally see it in theaters as early as next year:

Voyage Of Time is supposed to come out, I think, 2014. It’s all planned, it’s got a release, it has a distributor — it’s IMAX, it’s a big IMAX film — I think it has a date and all of that.”

The documentary is said to be in the vein of the cosmos scenes from Tree of Life, with rumored narration from Brad Pitt and Emma Thompson.  Here’s hoping Weber is right and the film opens next year.  The prospect of a Terrence Malick film in IMAX is almost too good to be true.

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