The alternate ending to slasher film Happy Death Day is very dark. Last year was an incredible year for horror movies. While much of the credit has deservedly been given to IT and Get Out, a number of other movies in the genre contributed as well. One of them was Happy Death Day, a somewhat comedic slasher film about a sorority girl named Theresa (Tree) who keeps reliving her birthday – only to be murdered by a masked figure each time. Happy Death Day was made for under $5 million dollars, and made a profit of $115 million.
Much of the film’s humor came from Tree’s frustration at having to repeat her birthday – a date she hates – over and over again. She remained in the loop until she was able to solve her own murder and prevent the killer from successfully taking her out. Along the way, she managed to fall in love with classmate Carter and learned to be a kinder and less selfish person. She even sacrificed herself in order to reset the day to save Carter when he dies trying to protect her. She did eventually learn who wanted her dead – her roommate Lori – and stopped her. The reason Tree’s day kept resetting was never explained – though it will be in a potential sequel.
Happy Death Day has a rather happy ending, with Tree waking up the next day in Carter’s room and the two of them happily kissing. But a deleted scene that Blumhouse released on the DVD – now online thanks to On The Set – gave the story a much darker ending. Tree was hospitalized following her fight with the killer – plus the accumulated damage from the various stabbings, hangings, burnings, and other deaths she suffered. Believing herself to be safe, she was confronted by Stephanie Butler, the wife of the professor she was having an affair with. Mrs. Butler then killed a helpless Tree one more time. And the movie would have ended on that moment, without revealing whether Tree’s day reset again or if this was the time she stayed dead.
While the happy ending fits the movie’s lighthearted tone much better than this darker alternative, that might not be the only reason it was changed. Considering that the reason Lori wanted to kill Tree was due to a crush on Dr. Butler, having a second person wanting Tree dead over the same man might have been a bit much. Especially considering that a college professor who cheats on his wife with a student and let’s her slide on her schoolwork to boot isn’t really worth fighting over in the first place.
While Happy Death Day might not be a multiple Oscar nominee like Get Out, it was an entertaining and enjoyable movie, largely because of the humor and lighthearted elements balancing out the horror and death. The choice to give Tree a chance at happily ever after rather than use the darker alternate ending certainly contributed to that. All things considered, it looks like Happy Death Day ended just the way it should.
Source: On The Set
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