Sometimes filmmakers get the endings of their movies wrong. But the lucky ones figure it out and fix it before the movie goes out to the general public. Here are some examples.
1. “Legally Blonde”. The original ending had Reese Witherspoon and Selma Blair a year later, handing out Blonde Legal Defense Fund pamphlets on campus. Fans at a test screening didn’t think it was exciting enough, so they changed it to Reese giving a speech at her graduation.”
2. “Get Out”. In the original ending, Daniel Kaluuya’s character ends up in PRISON for the murders of the Armitage family. But it “sucked the air out of the room” at test screenings. That convinced Jordan Peele that the ending needed to be positive, to give viewers a hero and an escape.
3. “Happy Death Day”. The movie originally ended with Tree just being stuck in the time loop AGAIN, and seemingly forever. But after she worked so hard to become a better person, the audience felt betrayed that she didn’t get a happy ending. So they let her discover who her killer was and end the cycle. (But then they shoved her right back into an even crazier time loop in the sequel, so what was the point???)
4. “Speed”. Originally, it ended with everyone getting off the bus. But the studio didn’t think the movie could be set entirely on a bus, so they added some action scenes away from it. Most notably, the elevator scene at the beginning, and the subway scene at the end.
5. “The Lion King”. If you can believe it, there was a version of the script where Scar KILLS Simba but then burns up in the flames that surrounded them during their final fight. Storyboards were even drawn up for that ending. But it was changed during the natural process of script revision.
6. “Pretty in Pink”. Molly Ringwald was always meant to end up with Jon Cryer’s dorky character, Duckie. But the GIRLS at test screenings wanted her to hook up with the CUTE boy, played by Andrew McCarthy. So they reshot it. John Hughes was never convinced that was the right way to go, though. So his next movie, “Some Kind of Wonderful”, had a similar story, but lead actor Eric Stoltz ends up with the “outcast” character instead of the hot girl.
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