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From Script To Screen: Your Guide To All The Deleted/Missing Scenes In 'The Master'

by Cory Everett
January 9, 2013 12:04 PM
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13. TOO TOUGH TO DIE (109)
One of Freddie’s most defining physical characteristics in the screenplay was dropped entirely before filming. In the script, Freddie is covered in “amazing, intricate tattoos: birds, ships, flags, palm trees,” which he gathers during the course of the film, and after riding off during Pick-A-Point, there is a bridging scene of Freddie on a freighter mixing up a batch of liquor. It's revealed there that he's now sporting a new tattoo that reads TOO TOUGH TO DIE. Again, it seems like it was an unnecessary trait now but we'd love to know how close it came to filming before it was dropped. Imagining Phoenix in all those tattoos still seems like a stunning image.

After Freddie visits the Solstad house, we arrive at the movie theater. In the film, we cut from Freddie dreaming in the movie theater-- something many viewers seemed to miss but it’s quite clearly edited in a way that indicates he’s dreaming Dodd’s entire phone call-- to Freddie arriving in England. In the screenplay, Freddie takes quite a different detour. As he wakes up after his phone call, Freddie accidentally falls off the balcony of the movie theatre onto the auditorium below and ends up in a hospital. In an episode of chance, he hits the ground right next to Ellen, the burlesque dancer he met during his night out with Clark. She accompanies his unconscious body to the hospital and when he wakes up, she tells him that his advice helped saved her life. Freddie asks her if he’s dead or dreaming and she assures him that he’s not. Seeing this stranger who had meant so much to her in such a damanged state, Ellen begins to cry. Freddie decides to track down the The Master and calls the Cause College of Phoenix who confirms Freddie’s dream, that The Master is indeed in England.

15. THE END (120-125)
In the film, the shot of Freddie walking down a tree lined street is replaced in the script by war-ravaged London but other than some minor differences, the final sequence with The Master and Freddie plays out much the same as it does in the film. The Master, not Peggy, delivers Peggy’s dialogue about “This is not fashion. This is something you do for a billion years or not at all....” which makes sense that Anderson would transfer that to Peggy as well to assert her as being a less demure character. During their final conversation, The Master asks Freddie to sign a contract to serve the Cause for 3 billion years, which Freddie silently passes on.

Like the film, the screenplay ends with Freddie sleeping with Winn Manchester (Jennifer Neala Page), described in the text as a prostitute, though his closing words, “ put me back in” appear to have been an ad lib.

There are also a significant number of scenes in the film which are not anywhere in the script (though it’s completely possible the Weinstein Co. have posted a draft which was not the final shooting script on their site). These scenes include: the close up of Freddie in the war, everything on the beach, Freddie drinking rocket fuel on V-J Day, soldiers being debriefed (as inspired by “Let There Be Light”), the inkblot test, every scene with Doris (the script only mentions her by name), “I’ll Go No More A-Roving” naked dancing scene, the window to the wall sequence, Peggy reading the Victorian porn, Freddie & Clark facing off during Application 45 Version 1, Freddie and Master digging up the manuscript (in the script Freddie digs it up alone under a house) and The Master yelling at Helen Sullivan.

For a full list of sequences that were filmed but not included in the final cut, see Cigarettes & Red Vines: Guide To 'The Master' Deleted Scenes.

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More: Paul Thomas Anderson, The Master

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  • ben | January 23, 2013 10:59 AMReply

    Does anyone know what the scene from the trailer with Freddie holding the gun is from?

  • reader | January 10, 2013 2:21 PMReply

    The article forgets to mention the wonderful monologue the Master delivers to Freddie in their final "break-up" scene. The one about sharing a past life during the Prussian war. Great, great stuff. IMHO, the script is far better than the film, which peters out right after the Window-to-the-Wall sequence. The third act could've used the suspense that the script had -- and the NYC stuff would've been a nice addition as well. It's too bad. I wanted to like the film, but I only liked about 2/3rds of it. And I saw it 3 times in the theater on 65mm.

  • rudy | January 9, 2013 9:56 PMReply

    I was bummed that Freddie did not say what I thought was the best line in the script which went something like: "This is booze, there are secrets in liquor".

    also I really loved the Cousin Bob sequence, as a New Yorker I was a bit bummed out that P.T Anderson didnt really get a chance to shoot in NY. I would of liked to have seen how he would of tackled making NYC look like 1951 and just the sheer bliss of finally seeing how Anderson and Mikai would of lensed it. I also loved that line Cousin Bob said: "I've been licking pussy all summer". It was to be shot in the Village and would have featured two girls that resemble Barbra Steisiand.

    - also I remember a great line in There Will Be Blood that had Daniel saying in the scene were he witnesses his fake brother's inebriated state with disgust, Daniel mentions something to effect of his cock being dead and rambles a bit about that and how H.W is not is biological son.

  • p-dub | January 10, 2013 12:02 PM

    1) The line about their being secrets in the booze is in the film.

    2) Are you referring to the script for There Will Be Blood because those lines certainly aren't in the film? In the sequence where he sees his "brother" getting drunk and asking for money, Daniel doesn't say a word. He just watches in the corner, dwelling in his anger.

  • Noany | January 9, 2013 1:39 PMReply

    hmmm. this isn't exactly related BUT: Has anyone noticed that in the soundtrack the bit of dialogue during the song sung by Madiesen Beaty that the male who speaks sounds kinda like Jeremy Renner??? He was the first choice for Freddie and worked before it fell off and then Phoenix came in... Can anyone else hear this?

  • Michael | January 9, 2013 1:31 PMReply

    Great article. Thanks for all the effort in putting this together.

  • yer | January 9, 2013 12:27 PMReply

    The final film is so much better. The script had a lot more cheesy genre elements at play like the Hardy boy chase for gold with his cousin and the paranoid chase after he retrieves the Master's box. Anderson made a great decision to not separate the The Master and Freddy for more than what was necessary as well as making Freddy not quit his alcoholism.

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