1. Up's opening sequence was about Ellie and Carl punching each other repeatedly

The opening sequence of Up has gone down in animation history as one of the most touching, gut-wrenching sequences in cinema, and an incredible example of the power of visuals and music, as most of the montage occurs without a single word being spoken. It's simple, it's beautiful, it's tragic, and it was almost about Carl and Ellie punching each other repeatedly for the span of their lives.

Instead of a purely romantic and simply-told story of a life well-lived, there was originally an additional element to the relationship of the Frederickburgs: PUNCHING. Instead of meeting in a treehouse, commiserating over their love of adventure, the first plan was to have Carl trying to trap a bird, and Ellie punching him for bein' mean to said bird. This set off a "kids flirting via violence" sequence where the two would try to surprise the other with a sock to the face when the other was least suspecting it.

Even in their final moments together, when Ellie is on her deathbed in the hospital, she lightly punches Carl in the shoulder (although this is supposed to be heartwarming and sweet, not an escalation of their Punch-Competition).


Why did they remove the punching from what is now known as the sweetest, most tear-inducing sequence in modern cinema? Per director Pete Docter:

"We showed it and there was silence and people were sort of shocked. [...] They thought it was too violent or something."

Probably the right move.

2. The Matrix originally had the Machines using humans as processors instead of batteries


One of the biggest nerd complaints about the basic premise of The Matrix was that the machines using humans as batteries made no goddamn sense - the laws of the conservation of energy would say that humans can never generate more energy than they consume, and (of all the animal species) they don't have the most efficient ratio NOR the highest output. So why would the Machines make such a goddamn stupid decision?

Anyways, if the original script was followed, this complaint would have never existed in the first place - because humans were never meant to be batteries, they were meant to be processors. Which makes a lot more sense! The reason humanity would have been spared above any other species would be due to our higher brain functionality, and the reason humans were uniquely able to toy around within the Matrix is because it was running on code generated by human brains.

But the Wachowskis chose to make humans batteries (probably for simplicity's sake), and nerds on the internet had another excuse to shout "UM, ACTUALLY" for the rest of time.

It should be noted that nerds are TOTALLY willing to accept everything else, from floating squid-robots to a virtual reality world mimicking our own that has deja vu occur when changes are made to the world and kung-fu tutorials being downloaded into your brain.

3. Back To The Future Part 2 had Doc and Marty going to 1967 instead of returning to 1955.


One of the coolest sections of Back To The Future Part 2 involved Marty having to travel back to 1955, shadowing his original trip back to the past from the first film but in such a way that he didn't come into view or change anything that would affect his previous self. Of course, this section almost didn't exist at all - fading away like a polaroid that adjusts itself for some reason.

In the original script for Back To The Future Part 2, Marty and Doc had to go to 1967 instead of 1955. The thinking was that the series had already explored that portion of Marty's parents' lives, so why not try out a new time period for Marty to try to awkwardly fit into and invent music for? in 1967, Marty would find his parents as part of the hippie movement, and again Marty's presence threatens to prevent his own birth (and the time-ruining sports almanac would still appear, but start off in 1960 instead of 1950).


Why was this scrapped? Well, going back to 1955 was a lot more fun, story-wise. And weirdly enough, the plan to travel to 1967 and having to ensure his parents bone is MORE retreading the same ground that going back to the same year as the first film. And lastly, the friction with actor Crispin Glover (who played George McFly) made him (and the character of George) basically unusable for the film. Instead, we got some fun exploration of paradoxes and a Crispin Glover lookalike hanging upside down for about 2 minutes.


4. Groundhog Day had Bill Murray and Andie McDowell living in the timeloop together for thousands of years


Groundhog Day is - for an early 90s romantic-comedy - one of the most existentially horrifying films ever produced. A man is trapped in an inexplicable timeloop for no actual reason, caused by circumstances and powers he can't even begin to fathom, and not even his own repeated death can save him from his Kafka-esque fate.

Of course, eventually the magic of True Love saves him from the timeloop for some (also unexplained) reason...but originally Andie McDowell's love DIDN'T save him from his hellish predicament. In fact, it made it even more terrifying, as Andie McDowell was now trapped in the timeloop as well.

Worse, the original script actually told the audience how long Phil was trapped in this Twilight Zone situation - roughly 10,000 years. TEN THOUSAND YEARS, OF REPEATING THE EXACT SAME DAY, OVER AND OVER, WITH NO HOPE OR MEANS OF EVER ESCAPING. That's pretty messed up, and might help shed light on how Bill Murray became Hollywood's equivalent of a wily trickster god.