The Scene Alita: Battle Angel Cut, And Why Fans Likely Won't Ever See It

Alita Battle Angel

Robert Rodriguez’s Alita: Battle Angel was meant to be an origin story for a character who would enjoy several adventures in multiple movies. Heck, the movie ended on a cliffhanger, teasing a villain (played by Edward Norton) who fans one day hope to see on the big screen.

For the time being, they have one movie in the Alita archive, and the cut of the film basically includes all of the relevant footage that was shot for the finished cut. Alita: Battle Angel producer Jon Landau hopped on the phone with CinemaBlend this week to drum up awareness and support for the movie’s top-tier visual effects, and that got us wondering about scenes they might have filmed for the movie that didn’t make it. Landau could only remember one, and he explained why we likely won’t see it in a Director’s Cut of Alita: Battle Angel.

There was a training sequence that we shot in an alley Hugo is teaching her how to do the street Motorball. That's really the only significant scene. Everything else was just trims and tucks. I’m not sure we’re ever… because the finishing costs are so high on scenes that don't make it into the movie, I'm not sure we're going to [release] that.

Motorball is a full-contact sport in the futuristic world of Earth 2563, which involves rollerblading, hockey, roller derby and more. Hugo (Keean Johnson) is a human love interest who teaches Alita (Rosa Salazar) the art of the sport – and because of her durability, she proves to be very, very good at it.

On screen, it looked like this:

Why was this particular training scene taken out of the final cut for Alita: Battle Angel by director Robert Rodriguez? According to producer Jon Landau:

It wasn't necessary when we looked at the movie. We felt that we got everything out of her from a character standpoint by seeing her doing the street Motorball and her motivation and her yearning to learn more about her past. We did not need another scene that did the same thing we were doing. It came across very strongly in other scenes.

The Alita: Battle Angel team hopes that the Academy recognizes their efforts when it comes time for below-the-lines Oscar recognition. Meanwhile, die-hard super fans of the movie, nicknamed The Alita Army, fight daily on social media for a sequel in this universe. Stay tuned to CinemaBlend to find out which happens (hopefully both)!

Sean O'Connell
Managing Editor

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. Having been with the site since 2011, Sean interviewed myriad directors, actors and producers, and created ReelBlend, which he proudly cohosts with Jake Hamilton and Kevin McCarthy. And he's the author of RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT, the Spider-Man history book WITH GREAT POWER, and an upcoming book about Bruce Willis.