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

Photo of Cory Everett By Cory Everett | @modage January 9, 2013 at 12:04PM

With the book now closed on 2012 films and awards season in full swing, we thought this would be a good opportunity to dive a little deeper into one of our favorite films of last year, Paul Thomas Anderson’s most recent opus, “The Master.” Though not your typical awards bait, the film has nonetheless managed to rack up an impressive number of accolades including being named the Best Film of 2012 by Sight & Sound, Rolling Stone and the Village Voice among others.
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Master S2S: End
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.

14. FREDDIE FALLS / HOSPITAL STAY (115-119)
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.

Master S2S: Slow
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, “...now put me back in” appear to have been an ad lib.

APPENDIX (SEQUENCES NOT IN THE SCREENPLAY)
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.

This article is related to: Paul Thomas Anderson, The Master


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