When a tweet went viral that referenced a 2015 interview with Mrs. Doubtfire director Chris Columbus in which he claimed there existed a PG, PG-13, R and NC-17 cut of the Robin Williams-led 1993 family comedy, fans immediately called for the more adult versions of the film. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly on Friday, Columbus said that the NC-17 version doesn’t actually exist, but that there are three different versions of the film, including an R-rated one.
“The reality is that there was a deal between Robin and myself, which was, he’ll do one or two, three scripted takes. And then he would say, ‘Then let me play.’ And we would basically go on anywhere between 15 to 22 takes, I think 22 being the most I remember,” Columbus said.
Because of Williams’ knack for improvisation, some of the takes would go in a direction that wouldn’t exactly be considered, “family friendly.”
“He would sometimes go into territory that wouldn’t be appropriate for a PG-13 movie, but certainly appropriate and hilariously funny for an R-rated film,” continued Columbus. “I only [previously] used the phrase NC-17 as a joke. There could be no NC-17 version of the movie.”
But while the R-rated version may never see the light of day, Columbus says he’s open to making a documentary about the film’s production that would include footage from the R-rated cut. The documentary could include interviews with producer Marcha Garces Williams, editor Raja Gosnell and Columbus himself.
“I think that that would be the best approach. I’m very proud of the film… I’m in a good place with Mrs. Doubtfire, so there’s really no reason to do the definitive cut. The definitive cut of Mrs. Doubtfire is out in the world right now.”