a few spoilers and such
I like reading scripts. The original stories almost always differ from the final films. There was a scene with Mr Potter and Clarence cut out of It’s A Wonderful Life and there’s a sequel to The Matrix floating around that actually makes sense. All You Need Is Kill by D W Harper is the original script for Live Die Repeat or Edge of Tomorrow.
There’s a lot of stuff in the Tom Cruise time loop story that makes no damned sense at all. Like Tom being a recruiting officer and how he makes that finial time hop at the end. I still liked the movie, but it’s not a script that benefits from a careful reading. All You Need Is Kill is a hell of a lot better story, based on the book of the same name written by Hiroshi Sakurazaka. I haven’t read the book, but I’m guessing this script is a bit closer to the novel than the one Tom used.
While they are basically the same story, a solider meets with a freak accident that traps him in a time loop, the execution of that story is a good deal different. Here our hero is a grunt who was drafted as the earth faces its final battle, much more likely than an all volunteer force inspired to enlist thanks to Tom’s brilliant ad campaign. The battle rages and our hero is killed over and over again, but there isn’t any Red Herring for him to follow about some Secret Base in the mountains and a Master Mimic. We are given a bit more backstory about how the Mimics came to earth and how they invaded only after they were provoked. We also learn a bit more about the blonde killing machine Rita, known as The Full Metal Bitch. There’s a bit more character development here for a couple of the characters, like the ever yelling Sergeant and a couple of Cage’s bunk mates.
The ending is a bit less optimistic as well. It’s not all as cut and dry as in the Tom Cruise version. There are still battles to be fought and there’s no happy ending for Cage and Rita. But it was good. I liked it. The ending left open the possibility of another film, while still wrapping things up nicely for this part of the war.
Of course, reading unproduced scripts is like watching Pilots that aren’t picked up or wondering what Tom Selleck would have been like as Indiana Jones, it’s a mixture of fun and sorrow. I know no one is ever going to make All You Need Is Kill and Tom will never get to play Indy. But it is fun to think about.
I found All You Need Is Kill on SimplyScripts.com, and it’s well worth reading.