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Matthew Broderick Kind of Liked That Alternate Election Ending

The lost alternate ending to the 1999 classic Election found its way onto the Internet recently, and star Matthew Broderick was shocked when Vulture told him about it last night. "What?" he exclaimed, at the premiere for the play Knickerbocker. "That was leaked?" Broderick was tickled to find out that the six-minute sequence, which ends with a conciliatory Mr. McAllister signing Tracy Flick's yearbook, had been found on a garage sale VHS tape — "Oh, I wish they had put it on DVD or something" — but he says it wasn't quite what director Alexander Payne had in mind, either. "What they originally shot was not the ending they originally wrote," Broderick said. "They had an argument. So whatever got leaked is not quite the original script ending. I remember it pretty well, but it was written, not shot. The original ending that they shot, it was sadder, and I guess when they showed it to an audience, they got bummed out. So they made it more upbeat. I like the ending that they released, but I always liked the original one, too." Broderick noted that the lost ending mimicked the book it was based on, though he has no idea what McAllister would have written in that yearbook: "I had a feeling he couldn't figure out what to write himself. I could never figure out what he would write. Maybe that's why it was frustrating for the audience."

Photo: JIMI CELESTE/PatrickMcMullan.com