Until May 1927, the original version of Metropolis could only be seen in Berlin, after Paramount (in America) shortened the original film due to poor box office. In 1928, a copy of the long version of the film was sent to Argentina, but in the process became part of the collection of film critic Manuel Peña Rodríguez.
A copy of those reels were sold to the Argentina’s National Art Fund in the 1960s. Now that longer version of the film with the missing footage has been rediscovered in Buenos Aires.
The Guardian reported:
"Helmut Possman, director of the Friedrich-Wilhelm Murnau Foundation which holds the rights to Metropolis, said the film, which is badly scratched, would be made available to the public after it has been restored.
"This material, which we had long considered to be lost forever, will help us to a new understanding of Fritz Lang's masterpiece," he said.
Martin Köerber, who restored a previous version of Metropolis, expressed his delight at the new footage.
He told Die Zeit: "It doesn't matter how bad the condition of the material is, the original intention of the film, including all of its minor characters and subplots, is now once again tangible for viewers. The rhythm of the film has been restored."
Learn more from these news and fan links:
Link to six stills from missing footage, Zeitmagazine. more>
Link to Associated Press. more>
Link to BBC. more>
Link to The Guardian. more>
Link to story in Die Ziet. more>
Link to article on Forbiddenplanet. more>
Link to article on Greencine. more>
Link to some behind the scenes images Zeitmagazine. more>