Actor Topher Grace, otherwise known as that guy who’s not playing Venom anymore, has an interesting hobby of editing down giant trilogies into single feature-length movies. His latest masterpiece is Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit, so it looks like Warner Bros. has a new hashtag to contend with: #ReleaseTheGraceCut.
In an interview with IndieWire, Grace revealed he took on the Herculean task of editing down the three films in Jackson’s The Hobbit series—clocking in at nearly eight hours—into a clean, two-hour cinematic experience. He called the final product “a lot tighter” than its predecessor, and it’s even tighter than other fan edits, which have gone upwards of four hours long.
“I think that maybe The Hobbit should’ve been one movie, and many people would agree,” Grace said. “Money drives a lot of those franchises. It’s better when the art leads.”
This isn’t Grace’s first editing rodeo. Back in 2012, he taught himself to film edit by recutting the Star Wars prequels into an 85-minute movie called Star Wars: Episode III.5: The Editor Strikes Back. It was privately screened once and has since disappeared from the internet (you can’t even watch the trailer online anymore). However, Grace’s reportedly amazing edit inspired others to follow in his footsteps with their own versions.
Grace said he took on the project as a form of therapy after playing David Duke in Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman. It doesn’t look like he intends for the movie to be made public, much to our dismay, and he doesn’t have plans to turn his admittedly impressive side project into a career at any point. “It’s like doing woodwork in my garage,” he added.
But I’m telling you, I’m starting a campaign: Release the Grace Cut, Warner Bros.—I mean Topher Grace, since you’re the only one who actually has access to it. The world wants to see a Hobbit movie that doesn’t suck.