Video: Ryan Phillippe & Breckin Meyer Share Shirtless Kiss In Deleted "54" Scene
1998's 54 helped many a closeted teen like myself come to terms with our sexuality (and to develop a near-debilitating crush on Ryan Phillippe), but an infamous scene deleted from the director's cut likely would have underscored the impact of the film.
The scene, practically mythological until recently, shows Ryan and Brecking, shirtless and intimate, share a kiss.
After Elton's (now thebacklot.com) Brent Hartinger was one of few who got to view the director's cut of 54 back in early 2010, and wrote a review of a version of the film that many didn't think they'd be able to see.
The original cut by writer-director Mark Christopher included a scene of Phillippe’s character briefly kissing co-star Breckin Meyer. But test-audiences reportedly reacted negatively to this scene, and to the movie’s generally unsympathetic characters.
Fearing a bomb, the studio, Disney/Miramax, insisted on quick reshoots and reedits. In the end, 45 minutes were cut from the film, new scenes were shot and 25 minutes of new footage were added, along with additional voice-over to streamline the narrative.
But finally, through god or Oprah or some sympathetic YouTuber close to the director or studio, the infamous kissing scene found its way online. It was posted a few months ago but wasn't noticed by fans until this week. Being raw footage, the picture quality is almost as poor as that of the heavily-Vaseline-blurred RuPaul's Drag Race: The Lost Season. Still, it's a poignant scene that I'm sad didn't make it into the same film I watched as a struggling teenager.
Worth the wait? Would this scene have made it into a similar big budget, mainstream Hollywood film in 2013, Instincters?