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Director’s Cut of The Dark Crystal Released on YouTube, Much Creepier Than Original

It's like our nightmares just got a director's cut.

We know that Jim Henson wanted The Dark Crystal to be a lot different than the theatrical release, but to see just how different, fan Christopher Orgeron restored one of Henson’s first versions. The edit lacks voice overs, inner monologues, or most of the English spoken by the Skeksis. You can watch the whole thing right now.

Anyone familiar with The Dark Crystal could probably watch this video with a level of appreciation for what Henson and Frank Oz were trying to do, but for people who have never seen the theatrical version we think it would be easy to easy to get lost, which is why this isn’t the version that was released.

In the YouTube description of the “director’s cut” Orgeron explains exactly what this version of the film is:

This is indeed an edit that Jim Henson and Frank Oz made themselves back in late 1981. This is not a “fan edit” and I didn’t change the edit that was seen in the copy of the workprint. This vision is one that Henson and Oz cut together themselves but was never made widely available in a home video capacity. Henson and Oz of 1981 would, and did, approve of this cut enough to show it to test audiences but after negative feedback there were changes to the dialogue. Hopefully that clears things up and I hope the Henson company can appreciate the historical value of having this version available again.

So what you’re looking at is the film as Henson and Oz intended it, before they changed it for a more general audience. The last bit of that quote makes us assume he’s released this without permission from the Henson Company, so we’re interested to see how long it lasts on YouTube.

Better watch it while you can.

(Christopher Orgeron via Mental Floss)

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Glen is a comedian, writer, husband, and father. He won his third-grade science fair and is a former preschool science teacher, which is a real job.