- Deseret News - Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Disney’s “Into the Woods,” based off the 1987 musical of the same name, opens Christmas Day. Here are five changes made to the film version to brace yourself for. Spoiler alert!

Rapunzel’s twist of fate: Perhaps the most talked and speculated about change is Rapunzel’s reprieve, which was reportedly first discussed by show songwriter and lyricist Stephen Sondheim in a master class, according to The New Yorker. Rapunzel (played by Mackenzie Mauzy) is no longer squished by a heartbroken giant, though director Rob Marshall calls her fate “pretty dark.”

“It’s just a different kind of dark, and it’s just as harrowing, and just as sad, Marshall told Entertainment Weekly.

Other aspects of Rapunzel’s storyline are condensed and changed — she no longer bears twins or is exiled to the desert. Rather, she is placed on a swamp island in the middle of the forest, although her tears still revive her blind prince’s sight.

Time crunch: Nearly 30 minutes are shaved off Disney’s “Into the Woods” in comparison to the 1991 American Playhouse version. The second act, which takes place “some time later,” is more like the next day, with the baker’s wife (played by Emily Blunt) magically pregnant the night the witch’s curse is broken. The sped-up time takes us to the wedding of Cinderella (played by Anna Kendrick) and her prince (played by Chris Pine) with the subjects celebrating in the next shot.

Missing persons: The role of the narrator is gone, although the frame story is still intact. With the loss of the narrator, the role of the baker’s father is also largely cut.

Quiet company: Several songs are cut, including most of the company numbers such as “Ever After.” The musical themes are still included. Because of Rapunzel’s new fate, there no longer is a reprise to “Agony.” While there is some reminiscent dialogue, “No More,” the musical number between the baker and the baker’s father, is no longer included.

Original songs weren’t the only ones to get cut; rumored new song “She’ll Be Back” is no longer in the movie but will be on the DVD, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Flash from the past: Thanks to the magic of movies, viewers see Little Red Riding Hood’s (played by Lilla Crawford) trip down the gullet of the wolf (played by Johnny Depp). The scene is one of the flashbacks added in the movie. Other added scenes that are shown during songs include the witch’s (played by Meryl Streep) initial transformation into a hag and Jack’s (played by Daniel Huttlestone) first visit up the beanstalk.

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