Theatrical release just an advertisement for the DVD?

It used to be that the DVD had “extra” stuff on it, like extra scenes that were cool or interesting but that weren’t essential to the story. Lately, however, I’ve noticed that key scenes seem to be cut from the theatrical releases, so much so that some movies become confusing. At first I though it was just bad editing, but now I’m convinced that these scenes are deliberately cut, in order to appear as “new scenes” on the DVD, almost forcing you to watch the DVD in order to make any sense out of the movie.

I finally came to this conclusion after watching the remake of Dawn of the Dead in theater and then on DVD when it came out. In the theatrical version, there are several scenes where groups of people are surrounded by ghouls, apparently with no way out, then the scene cuts to the same people having escaped with no explanation. Of course, on the DVD version all was made clear.

So, what do you think? Am I right?

Whoops, I meant to post this in Cafe Society. Could someone please move it?

An explanation of this move from IMHO to Cafe Society will of course be on the upcoming Special Edition Directors Cut Widescreen Criterion Cut version of Theatrical release just an advertisement for the DVD?

i haven’t noticed the phenomenon the OP mentions, but i definetely have noticed that the amount and quality of special features on dvds has dropped enormously since dvds first came about. i suspect there was an awful lot of pressure on the makers when dvds were still new to put as much extra stuff as possible whenever possible to help entice people to make the shift from vhs.

I’ve noticed on recent ads for the DVD release of Hide and Seek with DeNiro and Dakota Fanning they keep touting the fact that the DVD has “4 alternate endings”.
WTF, are the producers giving into the fact that “well, we know the original ending sucked, but as you can see we did have 4 other ways to end it, all of which sucked equally. We just used the one that sucked the least.”

While I am usually a pretty cynical person, I don’t think that the studios are purposely cutting stuff out of the movie so the movie doesn’t make sense and that you must see the DVD for it to make sense. I think that would just do more harm than good: if key scenes are cut out of the theatrical release, bad word of mouth results whenever everyone who has seen it complains that the plot makes no sense and that the characters behave randomly, then less people see it at the theater, and then the less people that see a movie in the theater sometimes results in less seeing the DVD.

I would say that the bad editing you have seen is just that- bad editing. Studios have cut movies contrary to the director’s wishes before DVDs were around. You are right on theatrical releases mainly being advertisements for DVDs though. I know that it is affecting how many directors make their movies now, with the DVD more than the theater in mind.