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Whatever Happened to the Unrated Cut of Rob Zombie’s ’31’?

It may not be popping up on too many year-end ‘best of’ lists, but Rob Zombie’s 31 was undoubtedly one of the most hotly-anticipated horror movies of 2016. Zombie’s seventh feature took its sweet time getting to us, and was finally released into limited theaters this past summer. It subsequently hit VOD outlets and, as of this past Tuesday, is now available on DVD and Blu-ray.

But as many fans have discovered, the version of 31 that hit DVD and Blu-ray is the very same cut that was released into theaters. The 103-minute version of the film is the cut that Zombie trimmed down in order to get an R-rating from the MPAA – he submitted the film several times before they gave him what he needed – which would be fine if we hadn’t been promised the unrated cut of 31 on home video. As we reported back in January, Zombie did indeed make that promise…


The original cut of the film, slapped with an unreleasable NC-17 rating, screened at Sundance but hasn’t been seen or heard from since. And it’s most definitely not included on either the DVD or Blu-ray releases of 31, which again contain only the R-rated cut that was shown in theaters and made available through VOD outlets. So what gives? And how different was the NC-17 cut?

All we really know about the so-called unrated cut of 31 is that it was rated NC-17 for “sadistic graphic violence, bizarre sexuality/nudity, pervasive disturbing images, and some strong language.” Presumably, that cut of the film was much more graphically violent than the R-rated cut, which often seemed to skirt around the violent bits with quick cuts and off-screen kills.

In an interview with What To Watch earlier this year, Zombie did note that he didn’t feel as if the MPAA-enforced cuts hurt the overall film or compromised his vision. He said:

Every movie I’ve ever made has been an MPAA nightmare and this one was too, but it always is. Really what you do is you get the things that they’re upset about, and you try to push it through as hard as possible without sacrificing the movie. I didn’t feel like [31] suffered from it at all.

Fair enough. But will we ever see the NC-17 cut of 31? We’ll be doing our best to find out.

In 31, five friends are kidnapped on the day before Halloween and are held hostage in a terrifying place named Murder World. While trapped, they must play a violent game called 31, in which the mission is to survive 12 hours against a gang of evil clowns.




  • Really bummed out because im starting to realize it doesnt matter what version we get, the movie was a complete let down. There were some redeeming factors that i could call myself a fan but really im not sure i ever want to see this film again. I liked it the first time but the second time i just really could barely sit through it

    • Nahuel Benvenuto

      i was sick of it like 30 minutes in, curiously the only time i felt like that again was whe ni watched the Superbeasto, i never quit on a movie, but in just 20 i quit, both are terrible

  • Kyle Ord

    Yeah maybe he should have

    I hated the movie, maybe more violence could have saved it

  • Michael

    Perhaps the fan backed copies of the movie will have the uncut version? Not blaming RZ, but this whole process has been a let down.

    • Jack Derwent

      No they’re cut as well.

      • Michael

        Did you receive yours already? I still wait, and essentially for nothing but an autograph for $40.

        • Jack Derwent

          I didn’t order one myself but they’re all the same. That being said they’ve sent out the DVDs so you should get get yours soon.

  • Jack Derwent

    I think the easiest thing to rectify this (if people complain) would be to include an automatic digital copy of the unrated version with the preexisting ones.

    • Michael

      I would totally be okay with that. Just asking to receive what we were told we’d get.

  • J Jett

    John, i DO enjoy your articles and discussing movies/tv shows with you but this article/article title was clickbait all the way. lol. i figured there would be some new/official news regarding the unrated cut but it’s basically just info that we’ve already (you included on other “31”/Rob Zombie articles here on BD) been pondering/discussing (in comments sections). no biggie but a tiny bit disappointed the article doesn’t contain anything new regarding the unrated cut.

    • John Squires

      “Clickbait” would be me advertising that I had new info and then not delivering. Which I didn’t at all. Just having a discussion about something a lot of horror fans are talking about this week. Hopefully by having it, we can get some insight from Rob Zombie himself. Trust me. I’m working on it.

      • lion7718

        I thought it was already posted that Zombie said the film footage was lost.

        • John Squires

          That was House of 1000 Corpses.

          • Nick Botic

            “Clickbait” is becoming a grossly over/misused term. It’s getting annoying

      • Andrew Lyall

        Then the headline should really be “I don’t know what happened to the unrated cut of Rob Zombies 31”. It is click-baiting, John.

        • PsychoMantis18

          Nooooo, the title asks a question and doesn’t promise an answer but prompts discussion. I’m all for throwing abuse at BD for their regular click-bait articles but this isn’t one of them.

  • huntermc

    I’m not understanding this trend lately of NOT releasing the uncut version of horror flicks for their home video release. I get that they have to make concessions to the MPAA in order to secure a theatrical release. But then what is my incentive to buy the Bluray version, if its only going to be the same butchered cut that I saw in the theater?

    • PsychoMantis18

      Cause RZ and/or Saban are being dicks and want us to double-dip. I know I bought the theatrical, the manipulative-fucks.

    • Jengo Chaplin

      It’s a marketing ploy from whoever. Everyone thought they’d be getting an uncut copy. They’ll probably release it in time for Halloween (2017)


    Is it just me or what this movie just a total bummer with all the hype it was given? I mean its a neat premise and story line but the execution (no pun intended) just didn’t pack a punch. Like, it wasn’t really all of that violent or graphic what so ever. Maybe they really did cut a whole lot of that out to just make a rating? But shit, if your going to release it on DVD/Blu Ray give us what it was originally supposed to be.

    • Jengo Chaplin

      Not just you. Such anticipation for 31, and it was a weak entry in an otherwise awesome handful of movies he’s made. And Halloween II was an abomination imo.

      The girl who plays Angel Meyers really was so annoying with the constant screaming and overacting. Which is also the fault of Zombie. Danielle Harris should have been given the lead role imo.

  • Nahuel Benvenuto

    who cares, one of the worst movie, horror movie, 2016 movie, and RZ movie ever made

  • Lying piece of shit. Glad I didn’t support his crowdfunding campaign. The movie is crap.

    • Nick Botic

      Wow. You’re like…really upset aren’t you? Haha

    • Jengo Chaplin

      That’s complete shite. He used crowd funding? How much is Zombie worth, you think?

      I’m actually a big fan of his since his White Zombie days, but that makes me sour on him a bit. That, and the fact he puts his annoying ass wife in everything.

  • Baron Von Marlon

    I tried liking it but it’s just a bad movie.
    More violence and nudity won’t change that.

    It did give me another great idea for a movie: Clown Slayer
    About a movie lover who’s tired of clowns and goes on a booze and drug fueled murder spree.

  • Mike Lawrence

    I was wondering about this! I’ve been dying for the uncut version so hope it’s released at some point…

  • SpacemanSpliffz

    i’m glad i don’t consume any media about flicks/games i haven’t seen/played yet, going in completely in the dark is the best way for an unbiased opinion for me, i fucking loved this movie and just laugh at all the haters

  • Travis_Bickle

    Nobody should watch any version of this movie. You will never be able to get that time back.

    Spanish speaking nazi midget….dear lord what have we become???

    • PsychoMantis18

      Yet i’m guessing you’ve always been a pretentious twit without a clue.

  • Shawn Simpson

    I love Rob Zombie. From his films to his music but damnit I fucking hate 31. The fact that he cut out every actual violent scene just to have a snuff fuck scene with Doom Head just pisses me off. The shaky cam was horrendous. You could have gotten a better camera shot by placing the damn thing on a dryer with a pair of boots in it. This was one of my most anticipated films and then I saw it. Now I wish I could have my damn money back and the time I wasted on that hot piece of garbage.

  • Andrew Lyall

    Headline asks a question. Article says “fucked if I know”. It’s becoming harder and harder to visit this click-baiting site, honest to god. The amount of informative content is practically zero amongst the froth, baseless speculation and millennial “Hey, remember when X did Y? Well here’s the YouTube clip of it!!!”.

  • PsychoMantis18

    Does feel violent enough but the more the merrier for a film like this. Hurry the fuck up, RZ.

  • Harvey Dent’s Dermatologist

    What do you mean by “off-screen” deaths? The version I watched on Shudder was really bloody! I saw knives going into people’s bodies and when the Nazi midget got hit with the table leg full of nails, it showed all the gore when they pulled it back out of his head! The blow-up doll lady got chainsawed for 10 seconds straight. Did we watch the same version?

    • Harvey Dent’s Dermatologist

      This wasn’t a rhetorical question, John. I really want to know if the version on Shudder is different than the theatrical/DVD cut because every death happens on-screen in the version I watched.

    • dovitt

      I watched a Spanish subtitled version on You Tube that was very gory, was that uncut >

    • Mark Mann

      watching this as we speak…the neo-nazi midget just killed #4…he went in for the kill and then it cut away to sheri moon zombie before he killed #4

      • Harvey Dent’s Dermatologist

        That one doesn’t count because he doesn’t actually get killed, he just bleeds out until he dies.

  • Will Schuster

    Well, the movie was a giant pile of shit, so an uncut version can probably only help it.

  • Dermacka

    Without the violence and gore there’s nothing to endorse. A film like this is a 1 trick pony and needs to push the envelope.

    Neo nazi midgets who rape and kill and not necessarily in that order might sound fantastic on paper but gee, it wasn’t a very good film. I tried really hard to like this film. Acting was atrocious and I didn’t give a fuck about anyone in it.

  • Maxime C

    I really loved Rob Zombie’s movies so far. I even defend him when H2 is mistreated and wrongfully attacked.
    BUT 31 WAS HORRENDOUS to me. Poorly acted ( yes, Sheri Moon Zombie is bad in it, can you believe THAT? ), kind of boring, not as exciting as it could have been… YES, it’s violent, but Rob, violence doesn’t make it all. You need a script, you know that since you’ve directed movies before…

    One of my 2016 disappointements.

  • James Reardon

    I loved it. I actually thought “it’s in my top 3 rob zombie films” I thought acting was great and malcolm McDowell was great. Who cares what others think but in my opinion. Fuck yea awesome shit.

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