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162 min | 186 min (Director's Cut) | 215 min (Ultimate Cut)
Action | Mystery | Sci-Fi
IMDB rate:
Zack Snyder
7 wins & 12 nominations
Country: USA
Release Date: 2009-03-06
Filming Locations: Bloedel Floral Conservatory, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Budget: $130,000,000
Opening Weekend: $55,214,334 (USA) (8 March 2009)
Gross: $107,509,799 (USA) (28 May 2009)
Carla Gugino
Carla Gugino
Malin Akerman
Malin Akerman
Matthew Goode
Matthew Goode
Billy Crudup
Dr. Manhattan
Jackie Earle Haley
Jeffrey Dean Morgan
Edward Blake
Patrick Wilson
Dan Dreiberg
Matt Frewer
Stephen McHattie
Hollis Mason
Laura Mennell
Janey Slater
Rob LaBelle
Wally Weaver
Gary Houston
John McLaughlin
James M. Connor
Pat Buchanan
Mary Ann Burger
Eleanor Clift
John Shaw
Doug Roth
Robert Wisden
Richard Nixon
Jerry Wasserman
Detective Fine
Don Thompson
Detective Gallagher
Frank Novak
Henry Kissinger
Sean Allan
NORAD General
Garry Chalk
NORAD General
Ron Fassler
Ted Koppel
Stephanie Belding
Janet Black
Michael Kopsa
Paul Klein
William S. Taylor
Prison Psychiatrist
Chris Burns
Dumb Thug
Malcolm Scott
Fat Thug
Danny Wattley
Huge Prisoner
Nhi Do
Vietnamese Girl
Walter Addison
Lee Iacocca
David MacKay
Child Murderer (as David Mackay)
Fulvio Cecere
Agent Forbes
Ted Cole
Dick Cavett
Mark Acheson
Large Man At Happy Harry's
John B. Destry
Happy Harry's Bartender (as John Destry)
Chris Gauthier
L. Harvey Gold
New Frontiersman Editor
Jay Brazeau
News Vendor
Jesse Reid
Teenager at Newsstand
Manoj Sood
Karnak Scientist
Dan Payne
Dollar Bill
Niall Matter
Apollonia Vanova
Glenn Ennis
Hooded Justice
Darryl Scheelar
Captain Metropolis
Clint Carleton
Young Hollis Mason
Mike Carpenter
Young Moloch
Leah Gibson
Silhouette's Girlfriend
Brett Stimely
John F. Kennedy
Carrie Genzel
Jackie Kennedy
Greg Travis
Andy Warhol
Greg Armstrong-Morris
Truman Capote
Andrew Colthart
Naked Man At Warhol Party
Bruce Crawford
Bank Robber
Sal Sortino
1940 Watchmen Photographer (as Salvatore Sortino)
Eli Snyder
Young Rorschach
Lori Watt
Rorschach's Mother
Tony Bardach
John With Rorschach's Mother
John Kobylka
Fidel Castro
Carmen Lavigne
Anti War Protester
J.R. Killigrew
David Bowie
Steven Stojkovic
Mick Jagger
Martin Reiss
Frank Cassini
Sally's Husband
John R. Taylor
Tara Frederick
Aggressive Hooker
Daryl Shuttleworth
Jon's Father
Jaryd Heidrick
Young Jon
Ron Chartier
Carnival Photographer
Carly Bentall
Wally's Girlfriend
Matt Drake
Older Boy Bully
Haley Guiel
Laurie - 13 Years (as Haley Adrianna Guiel)
Sonya Salomaa
Adrian Veidt's Assistant
Tyler McClendon
Veidt Enterprises Security Guard
Salli Saffioti
Annie Leibovitz
Neil Schell
Man In Riot Crowd
Michael Eklund
Man In Riot Crowd
Deborah Finkel
Woman In Riot Crowd
Louis Chirillo
Face To Face TV Producer
Marsha Regis
Face To Face TV Receptionist
Patrick Sabongui
Knot Top Gang Leader
John Tench
Knot Top Gang Member
Santo Lombardo
Knot Top Gang Member
Jason Schombing
Darren Shahlavi
Marshall Virtue
Colin Lawrence
Officer Kirkpatrick
Chris Weber
Officer O'Brien
Alessandro Juliani
Rockefeller Military Base Technician
Alison Araya
Foreign Newscaster
Sahar Biniaz
Foreign Newscaster
Matthew Harrison
Foreign Newscaster
Bernadeta Wrobel
Foreign Newscaster
Youri Obryvtchenko
Foreign Newscaster
Heidi Iro
Foreign Newscaster
Kit Koon
Foreign Newscaster
Parm Soor
Foreign Newscaster
Cristina Menz
Foreign Newscaster
Lynn Colliar
Foreign Newscaster
Tony Ali
Foreign Newscaster
Katie Bennison
Foreign Newscaster
Ian Farthing
Foreign Newscaster
Calvin Lee
Foreign Newscaster
Alexander Mandra
Foreign Newscaster
Isabelle Champeau
Foreign Newscaster
Ashley O'Connell
Foreign Newscaster
Mark Gash
On Location Reporter
Suzanne E. Smith
On Location Reporter (as Suzanne Clements-Smith)
Tom McBeath
News Analyst
Kevin McNulty
News Anchor
Mark Docherty
Clay St. Thomas
Dale Wolfe
Keene Act Anchor
Ken Tremblett
Keene Act Anchor
Dawn Chubai
Keene Act Anchor
Manuelita Kinsley
Keene Riot Reporter
Tamara Stanners
Vietnam 51st State Anchor
Sahara Davis
Young Tenement Fire Child (as Sahara xOasis Ashanti Davis)
Greig Hospes
Tenement Fire Child
Danny Hospes
Tenement Fire Child
Ali Dunn
Tenement Fire Child
Jeffrey Flieler
Tenement Fire Policeman
Kurt Evans
Tenement Fire News Reporter
Sylvesta Stuart
Destruction Firefighter
Terence Kelly
General West
Mi-Jung Lee
A Bomb Test Anchorwoman
Ted Friend
Larry Culpeper
Tiffany Burns
News Reporter
Michael Adamthwaite
Bar Knot Top
Damon Caro
U.S. Soldier (uncredited)
Douglas Chapman
Roy Chess (uncredited)
Trevor Coppola
NY Swat #4 (uncredited)
Dave Cote
Man at Club (uncredited)
Saira De Goede
Girl at Club (uncredited)
Andres Markwart
Man In Riot Crowd (uncredited)
Ed Metzger
Prof. Albert Einstein
Yoosik Oum
Scientist (uncredited)
Kennith Overbey
Village People Cop (uncredited)
Zack Snyder
Commando in Vietnam (uncredited) (unconfirmed)
Michael Stevens
Doomsday Clock Scientist #1 (uncredited)
Danny Woodburn
Big Figure Prisoner
Did you know?
Delivery trucks with the Pyramid Transnational logo appear throughout the film: One is outside The Comedian's high rise as the detectives are investigating, another driving by the restaurant Laurie and Dan meet at, and another in the background as Rorschach watches Dan and Laurie leave the diner.
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In the opening credits, we see the retirement party for Sally Jupiter, which is a reference to the Last Supper painting. The Comedian is seated directly to Sally's right. In the Last Supper, Jesus is seated in the middle and the person on his right is considered by many to be Mary Magdelene. It is also suggested that Mary was the mother of Jesus's child. Therefore, the placement of the Comedian on Sally's right is a reference to him being the father of her child, Laurie.
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Tim Burton was at one point interested in directing the film with Johnny Depp as The Comedian. But he began work on Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007) and Alice in Wonderland (2010), and passed on the offer.
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At Karnak in some close ups of Nite Owl's face, the reflection in his goggles shows actor Billy Crudup in his motion capture suit covered in blue dots, instead of a full rendering of Dr. Manhattan.
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When the reporters are talking to Veidt in his office, they refer to him as being only the second hero to reveal his identity, after Hollis Mason. It is true that in the opening montage, a bomber is seen with Silk Spectre's alias "Sally Jupiter" emblazoned on its side. Her real last name was Juspeczyk. She assumed the name Sally Jupiter because she did not wish to be known as being Polish. No one would be able to just look her up in the phone book so she did not really reveal her true identity.
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When Adrian/Ozymandias is being interviewed in his office the reporter states that he is the second Watchmen to reveal his secret identity the first being Hollis Mason/Nite Owl I. Mason was a member of The Minute Men (the precursor to The Watchmen) which didn't form until he had retired and passed the Nite Owl mantle to Dan.
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Rorschach: Of course. You must protect Veidt's new utopia. What's one more body amongst the foundations? Well, what are you waiting for? Do it.
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Edward Blake: Once you realize what a joke everything is, being the Comedian is the only thing that makes sense.
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Rorschach: The engines!
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What are the different versions of the film?
There are three known versions of the film, the latter two of which were released on DVD and Blu-ray after the theatrical release of the film. The versions are:(1) The Theatrical Cut, which is 2 hours and 42 minutes long, including ten minutes of credits. Without the credits, this version is 2 hours and 32 minutes long, or thereabouts. It does not include any "Tales of the Black Freighter" scenes and is considered the "Basic" version. It was released on single-disc DVD on July 21, 2009.(2) A Director's Cut that has all the scenes removed from the theatrical cut restored, but still without the "Black Freighter" scenes. This version runs roughly 25 minutes longer than the Theatrical Cut. This version was released on 2-disc DVD and Blu-ray on July 21, 2009, the same day as the Theatrical Cut DVD. (The Director's Cut DVD and Blu-ray only include the Theatrical Cut as a Digital Copy.)(3) The Ultimate Edition. This version is the Director's Cut plus "Tales of the Black Freighter" and live action transition footage shot specifically for this version, which leads in and out of the "Black Freighter" scenes. This cut runs around 3 hours 30 minutes. This version also includes Under the Hood as well as Watchmen: The Complete Motion Comics as bonus features. This could be considered an extended Director's Cut, since this was the original vision Snyder had of the adaptation. It was released in late 2009 and will be a limited release, only available until June 2010.A detailed comparison between the Director's Cut and the Ultimate Cut with pictures can be found here.
How loyal is the screenplay to the novel?
The Theatrical Cut is more loosely based on the book than the Director's or Ultimate Cuts, while still being very close to the source material as it is. However, the Ultimate Cut is the most slavishly faithful, going so far as to include the "Tales of the Black Freighter" News stand subplot that took up a good portion of the comic book.A few of the additions to the Director's (and, subsequently, Ultimate) Cut are actually scenes that were not in the graphic novel in the first place, most notably Rorschach's initial encounter with two cops at Blake's apartment. This scene, however, does not contradict any major plot points, and merely serves as character development.A few other, minor changes include:-The police investigation of Blake's murder & subsequent dialog between the two detectives that opens the 1st chapter of the graphic novel is reduced in favor of a scene depicting the fight between Blake and his attacker.- In the graphic novel, The Comedian was born in 1924, but in the film he was born in 1918. This change was most likely done to accommodate the actor playing him, who simply could not be passed off as a teenager for the flashback to 1940 and without resorting to hiring another actor to play the younger Comedian.- In the novel, the masked adventurers were never known as "The Watchmen." The name referred to the speech that JFK never got to make in Dallas (due to his assassination), which contained the line "We in this generation are by destiny, rather than by choice, the watchmen on the walls of world freedom." It also refers to the old Roman phrase "Who Watches The Watchmen?" a phrase that serves as the theme of the graphic novel and appears throughout it as unfinished graffiti. The proposed name for the second-generation costumed adventurers in the novel was "The Crimebusters," although the group never formed, and the name was never adopted.- Dan Dreiberg, not Rorschach, breaks the news of the Comedian's death to Adrian Veidt. In the novel, Rorschach bypasses the security at Adrian's office by using his grappling gun to enter through a high window. Dan merely approaches Adrian as he's finishing up a press conference at his office.- The setup which gets Rorschach arrested is different. In the movie, Rorschach goes to Moloch's (Matt Frewer) apartment after doing research on Roy Chess (Douglas Chapman), the man who attempted to assassinate Adrian Veidt. At Chess' apartment, Rorschach found Chess' ID card which showed he worked for Pyramid Transnational. Rorschach had seen this logo at Moloch's, and hence went to talk to Moloch and ended up being framed. In the book, Rorschach visits Moloch once more, before Veidt's assassination attempt. He tells Moloch to leave him a message in a trash can if he remembers anything that could help Rorschach with the mask-killer. Rorschach receives a note, and then arrives at Moloch's house to discuss the Comedian, when he is ambushed by the cops.- Rorschach's hunting down of the kidnapper of Blair Roche. The movie keeps the majority of this sequence the same except for the death of the kidnapper. In the movie, Rorschach simply hacks the man's head to pieces with a meat cleaver; while in the novel, Rorschach gives the kidnapper a choice of cutting through his own arm that is cuffed to a wood stove or burning in the room Rorschach has set ablaze.- The absence of the flashback sequence wherein an angry Laurie, having just learned (through Hollis Mason's book Under The Hood) that the Comedian tried to rape her mother, confronts him at Mason's honorary party. This scene is considered reasonably important by some as helping to establish Laurie's deep hatred of him, and why she spurns the knowledge that he's her father so strongly.- The absence of the flashback sequence where Veidt invites Jon and Laurie to dinner at Karnak. This scene is important for being the introduction of the genetically-engineered lynx Bubastis, whose unexplained presence in the film has confused some.- The subplot involving the two detectives who are assigned on to the Edward Blake case, which was a big part of the book. The two detectives are now only seen in two scenes.- The omission of the background story of Rorschach's psychiatrist. In the novel we see how the psychiatrist's home life and emotional equilibrium is wrecked by his intimate contact with Rorschach, because "when you gaze into the abyss, the abyss also gazes into you." The Director's Cut adds some material to this scene, but does not depict scenes of the psychiatrist outside of his interview with Rorschach.-A significant part of Rorschach's history, how he came to be Rorschach and how he discovered the material that makes up his "face" (mask), is omitted from the film. As Walter Kovacs he hears about the murder of a woman, Kitty Genovese, which moves him to become vigilante. Genovese was killed outside her apartment building. At the time the graphic novel was released it was believed that her neighbors did nothing to help her, analysis of the crime since then leaves that theory ambiguous. The movie does recreate the event that made him a sociopath, his investigation of the little girl's disappearance (see above).- Rorschach's second costume, and the confrontation with his landlady. Whilst the comic mentions Rorschach's landlady several times, including having a TV interview with her when he's captured and her accusations of him trying to take advantage of her sexually, there's no mention of her in the film. As such, there's no scene of Rorschach retrieving his journal and spare costume, only to confront his stricken landlady. The film has Rorschach simply retrieving his old costume from Dr. Long during the prison riot.-The scenes with Laurie on Mars with Dr. Manhattan deciding the fate of the world are intact except for a significant change: in the comic books, Laurie deduces through repressed memories that her mother had a romantic relationship with the Comedian despite his attempted rape of her years before. Laurie comes to this realization herself. In the film, Manhattan touches her head and releases the repressed memories she has.- The finale. Instead of a genetically-engineered squid-like life-form passing off as an alien landing in the heart of New York in the novel, Veidt instead uses the "clean energy" sphere he'd developed with Manhattan to release a series of "energy bombs" (for lack of a better term) based on Dr. Manhattan's powers in cities around the globe, making Manhattan appear responsible. The consequences, the Watchmen's decision to take on a code of silence, and Rorschach's death all pretty much play out the same, though this time Nite Owl sees his death and yells in anguish. Dan also confronts an calm Veidt and beats him; Veidt does not resist or defend himself & merely tells him "a world at peace, Daniel. There had to be sacrifice."- Unlike the book, the police never deduce that Daniel is Nite-Owl and neither he or Laurie become wanted fugitives for breaking Rorschach out of prison. As such, they both stay in New York City with the apparent intention of resuming their superhero careers to some degree.Several major scenes not included in the Theatrical Cut that are present in the Director's and Ultimate Cuts include the murder of Hollis Mason, along with Dan's furious outburst at the knot top in the bar, Dr. Manhattan's explanation of the symbol on his forehead, and Dan and Laurie having a conversation after they fight the knot tops in the alley. Mostly, however, the Director's and Ultimate Cuts make the film more faithful to the graphic novel not by adding lots of new scenes, but instead simply extending small pieces of dialogue here and there to expand on character development which was so prominent in the comics.
What are the extra 29 minutes in the Ultimate Cut?
Along with all the changes listed above in the Director's Cut, the Ultimate Cut features these additions:1. After Rorschach is seen walking through the streets talking about how "even in the face of Armageddon, I will not compromise in [his need for justice to be made]," we see the first clip from Tales of the Black Freighter, which is followed by a short scene featuring the two Bernies and an unmasked Rorschach.2. After Rorschach's anecdote about the Comedian and his views on life, there is another newsstand scene featuring the two Bernies and, this time, Hollis Mason. Shortly afterwards, the camera zooms in on the comic book one of the Bernies is reading, and Black Freighter resumes. Afterwards we return to Laurie and Jon making love in bed.3. After Dan and Laurie fight the knot-tops in the alley, we again cut to the Black Freighter, and after a section of this we return to the newsstand where a man announces that Dr. Manhattan has left Earth.4. After Rorschach is arrested we see the two Bernies discussing how Rorschach had been coming to the newsstand all that time and they hadn't realised it, and then we see another section of Black Freighter. Afterwards we come back to Rorschach and the psychiatrist.5. After Dan has his nightmare we see another part of Black Freighter, and then we see the knot-tops picking on the Bernie reading the comic book.6. After Rorschach and Dan leave for Antarctica, we again see the Bernies at the newsstand, and see another section of Black Freighter.7. Just after Adrian announces his plan, we see the final part of Black Freighter, and then zoom out and rejoin the Bernies just before Adrian's bomb kills them in the street.
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Photos from cast
Carla Gugino Malin Akerman Matthew Goode Keith Martin Gordey Agam Darshi