Thank you @Netflix for promising to restore the version we made of the Lost finale to the service.— Carlton Cuse (@CarltonCuse) January 7, 2016
Sharp-eyed viewers — and EW’s own Lost expert Jeff Jensen — have noticed the two-part closer of the hit series is roughly 18 minutes shorter on Netflix than the 104-minute version that aired in 2010, with numerous small cuts made. There’s even a lengthy Reddit thread devoted to chronicling the changes. So if you’re watching the Lost finale on Netflix, you’re not seeing the whole story.
Lost co-creator Damon Lindelof says he was unaware of the Netflix presentation of the Lost finale until EW brought the matter to his attention. He’s not happy about it, and wants the mysteriously missing footage returned.
Lindelof gave this statement to EW: “I am totally befuddled by all this. Love it or hate it, the finale that aired is the definitive finale and to alter it in any way defies explanation. Something tells me that this isn’t Netflix’s fault … that it’s an honest mistake and something got miscommunicated — I seem to remember ABC had to make an edit for rerun airings that tightened the show into ‘format’ (42 minutes to accommodate commercials), and somehow that [version] mistakenly got sent to Netflix. This sometimes happened with our finales — we’d ask for extra time and ABC would agree to air, but then we had to do another tighter version for subsequent airings and/or international [markets]. We usually left these (painful) cuts to the discretion of our editors… but as the show lives on in DVD form and on Netflix, there is ZERO reason to have the shorter version out there.”