teaser trailer showcases the horror as well as the action. But test screenings were all over the map with positive reviews digging the visuals and adventure while negative ones focused on the leisurely pace and missed opportunities in the battle scenes. Having already spent over 6 months filming, the cast and crew were called back to the studio lot the following year for reshoots. On one end was McTiernan crafting a new ending and on the other was Crichton doing the same. Actor Vladimir Kulich would shoot scenes for each on any given day. While both men told the actor not to discuss what he was doing on each set, Crichton chimed in that it didn't matter what McTiernan was doing as he still had final cut.
websites were devoted to uncovering the lost McTiernan cut but even the original director couldn't promise a mythical masterpiece lying in wait. A 2011 French special edition DVD includes comments from the likes of Banderas, McTiernan, Kulich and co-writer Lewis in a nearly one hour documentary that has yet to make its way to the states.
After Desperado, Evita and The Mask of Zorro made Banderas a household name, subsequent misfires like 13th Warrior, Play It to the Bone, Original Sin and flop Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever would keep him working steadily until voicing Puss In Boots in the hugely successful Shrek series. Director McTiernan would fumble with big budget remake Rollerball and Basic before going to prison for allegedly lying to authorities. Now free, here's hoping he still has some flicks left in the tank. Crichton's film output would cool as adaptation Timeline would flop and he passed away in 2008 (Write In Peace). While it wasn't the big break Vladimir Kulich was hoping for, The 13th Warrior did lead him to a small role in Joe Carnahan's Smokin' Aces and Buliwyf-esque roles in Ironclad and TV's The Vikings. Until the special edition Blu-Ray hits the U.S., keep the mead coming.