Thanks to a viral tweet that resurfaced last week, director Chris Columbus has confirmed that there is indeed an R-rated version of “Mrs. Doubtfire” in existence. Referencing a 2015 interview with Columbus, fans have been calling for the release of a supposed NC-17 version of the family comedy starring Robin Williams, who had a taste for raunchy improv. Originally, “Mrs. Doubtfire” was rated PG-13 theatrically.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Chris Columbus said there is no NC-17 version, but did add that multiple cuts of the movie exist. “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. “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. I only [previously] used the phrase NC-17 as a joke. There could be no NC-17 version of the movie.”
Columbus said while it’s unlikely the other versions will ever see the light of day, Columbus is open to revisiting the 1993 comedy in the form of a documentary.
“I would be open to maybe doing a documentary about the making of the film, and enabling people to see certain scenes re-edited in an R-rated version,” Columbus said. “The problem is, I don’t recall most of it. I only know what’s in the movie at this point because it’s been a long time. But I do remember it was outrageously funny material.”
Columbus added, “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.”
On the documentary side, Williams’ life was most recently explored in Marina Zenovich’s 2018 film “Robin Williams: Come Inside My Mind,” an intimate look at the comedy master.
While filming ‘Mrs. Doubtfire’ (1993), Robin Williams improvised so much that there were PG, PG-13, R, and NC-17 cuts of the film pic.twitter.com/vjYUCmyrj2
— Film Facts 🎬 (@factsonfiIm) March 18, 2021