Deleted 'Flatliners' Remake Scene Explained Its Connection to Original Film

This past weekend, Flatliners opened to incredibly poor box office numbers and mostly negative reviews, still currently sitting at 2% on review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes. Of the many complaints about the film, audiences were unaware if it was a sequel or a remake, considering star of the original Flatliners, Kiefer Sutherland, appears in the film with a different character's name. The director of the film revealed to Collider that a deleted scene explains this new film is, in fact, a sequel in which Sutherland plays the same character.

"There was a scene with Kiefer [Sutherland], where he told, it was in the very end of the film, and he told this long, strange story about a famous doctor, that had death as his Godfather," Niels Arden Oplev explained. "And he does it super well and it was like two minutes long, and Diego [Luna] and Kiersey [Clemons] and James [Norton] are sitting there, as their characters, staring at him thinking 'What the f**k is going on with him?'"

"And he kinda ends up saying you, 'You can’t cheat death, and believe me, I know,'" the director added. "Which was a scene that the older audience liked."

This film, much like the original that starred Sutherland, Kevin Bacon and Julia Roberts, is about a group of medical students who intentionally stop their hearts, only for their friends to revive them. This experience could hopefully lead to answers about the "other side," but brings with it unintended consequences.

The original film is far from a classic, but served as a vehicle to launch the careers of all of its stars. Unfortunately, unfamiliarity with the original ended up confusing audiences further.

"It was like, 'Oh, he is, he has changed his name but he is Nelson from the old film,'" Oplev noted. "But the younger audience didn’t understand diddly-squat of that scene. They were like, 'Why… What the hell is this guy talking about?'"

Sadly, this resulted in the scene being cut and Sutherland's connection to the original film never getting explained.


"So in the end, it slowed down the ending and I just decided that the younger audience, the new generation of 'Flatliners' is mainly who this film is for," the filmmaker confessed. "And the older audience who can remember the old film, they would know who Kiefer’s character is, maybe. It’s ambiguous but they’ll think that he is him anyhow and then that’s where it’ll have to live. But it still is a pretty great scene."

Flatliners is in theaters now.