The secret weapon behind the greatness of M3GAN is screenwriter Akela Cooper. She actually wrote the script some time ago, before Malignant. Cooper now has a partnership with James Wan that will extend to the upcoming The Nun 2. In a recent interview, she explains how her original script for M3GAN was a lot gorier, before the movie was cut to meet a PG-13 rating.
In the interview with The LA Times, Cooper says; “No shade to Universal, love them, and I understand that once the trailer went viral, teenagers got involved and you want them to be able to see it. There should be an unrated version at some point. … I heard it is on the books. But yes, it was way gorier.”
“Her body count in the script was higher than in the movie. It wasn’t a Gabriel [Malignant]-scale massacre, but she did kill a bunch more people, including a couple of characters whom James was like, ‘I like what you did with those people, but I want them to live.’ I was merciless, but again, that is me. My humour is extremely dark.”
Despite its PG-13 rating, M3GAN is still a fun horror movie with plenty of fun and inventive kills. Some things are implied, then happen off screen, or we see the result of a kill rather than the moment itself. There’s still plenty of entertainment to be had, but an unrated cut could also be an exciting prospect.
As for the secret to a great horror kill? Cooper says; “Start with the environment. It’s kind of twisted because you have to put yourself in this situation — ‘If I’m in this location and I’m 4 feet tall, what can I do? I’m this size and I’ve got these tools to use to kill people.’ But it’s also therapeutic. If you’re having a bad day, just write a horror script and kill a bunch of characters on paper.”
While we wait to find out if/when we’re getting an unrated cut of M3GAN, check out our guide to the best slasher movies.