The new Pet Sematary movie, the latest in a resurgence of Stephen King adaptations, is a tale of multiple endings. There’s the original book ending from King’s horror tome in 1983, the relatively faithful ending of the 1989 movie adaptation, and the ending that directors Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer, and writers Matt Greenberg and Jeff Buhler, ultimately chose to include in their final version of the film. But there’s another ending that audiences have yet to see.
That alternate ending, which was shot and will be available for viewers who check out the movie on home video, puts a different spin on the final moments of the film and brings a different tone to the story overall. Stars Jason Clarke, Amy Seimetz and Jeté Laurence still appear, but their fates take a turn in this original, alternate final scene. Spoilers ahead for folks who haven’t seen Pet Sematary yet.
Check out EW‘s exclusive look at the alternate ending for Pet Sematary, which will be included on the film’s upcoming Blu-ray release:
Kölsch and Widmyer told EW that this ending was Greenberg and Buhler’s original way to end the story, a “sadder one” which they also loved. Here’s why they opted to change it:
As Kölsch says:
“Everybody liked the original scripted ending. But both endings were tested [with preview audiences] and what came back is [the theatrical ending] was clearer to people and it was what people seemed to resonate with and it left them with fewer questions — I don’t mean questions in a good ambiguity way but questions in that people didn’t understand everything that happened.”
“[The alternate ending is] the ending that really should be tested a week after you screen a film when you’ve had more time to sit and process it. The theatrical ending is the big loud slam dunk ending where it goes out on a bang. There’s an immediacy to it that’s satisfying. The [original ending] is haunting, it’s lingering, it stays with you.”
Technically, there were three endings for the film, only two of which were shot, as Kölsch confirms:
“There wasn’t really a third shot ending. The ‘third ending’ was a different cut of that same footage. We can understand how people thought there was three but that was just finding different [ways of assembling the same footage] in the editing room.”
“This is one of those situations where we really liked all the deleted scenes. Sometimes you cut things because they’re not working, but all these scenes are ones we’re big fans of. You’re going to learn more about Rachel and her parents, there’s more Zelda and there’s a very cool back story revealed about Jud and his wife.”
You’ll see all of that and more in roughly 90 minutes of bonus features on the new release, coming to Digital on Tuesday, June 25th and Blu-ray July 9th.
For more on Pet Sematary, be sure to check out the links to our write-ups below:
- The Best Horror Movies of 2019 So Far
- The Witching Hour: Episode 36 – Did ‘Pet Sematary’s Book Changes Help or Hurt the Film?
- The New ‘Pet Sematary’ Almost Had a Different Ending and It Was Closer to the Book
- ‘Pet Sematary’ Stars Jason Clarke & Amy Seimetz on the Wonderful Passion of Horror Fans
- The Filmmakers Behind ‘Pet Sematary’ Break Down Their Bleak, Brutal New Ending