It's not uncommon for movies in theaters to be cut down, but it still frustrates me. Watchmen will be 2hours and 37 minutes in theaters while the directors cut, which will likely be the first release of the movie will be 3 hours and 10 minutes.
The way I see it there are three possible outcomes of this.
1. The theatrical release isn't the best possible cut of the movie and was shortened to make more money regardless of quality. This likely means that the director was forced to make cuts he didn't want to.
2. They cut out things which didn't need to me in the movie and the directors cut is going to have thirty minutes of pointlessness in it simply so they can call it a directors cut.
3. They plan on releasing 24 different versions of the movie one a month for the next two years each of them at full price of course and with just enough extra that you will be tempted to buy it, then after two years they will release the supreme ultimate watchmen version which will be all 24 disks for only 459 dollars.