The first VHS release in Germany (from 1983) was cut to secure a "Not under 12" rating. The scene where Bond kills Vargas omits the brief shot showing the latter being perforated by the harpoon arrow (the previous shot showing Bond firing the harpoon was intact). Subsequent releases until 1991 were cut even more (the fight with Bouvar, the death of Quist, the pool fight, the underwater battle, the boat fight). Since then, the film has been released uncut on VHS, DVD and Blu-ray.
The UK Widescreen VHS version from the 90s has John Barry's original music at the end of the film, not the The James Bond Theme that is usually heard.
Some release prints did not show 'James Bond will be back On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)' at the end of the film's credits. This was because a late change meant filming of that movie due to difficulties in scheduling shooting during winter meant that film was postponed. You Only Live Twice (1967) became the next James Bond film. The solution put forward by editor Peter R. Hunt was simply to remove the name of the title from the final credits.
Closing credits on British prints use the James Bond Theme. International prints use an instrumental version of Thunderball.
A scene shot but not used featured Domino showing around Bond on the Disco Volante. According to the documentary on the DVD special edition, the footage is presumably lost.
Current prints on VHS videocassette in the United States use the James Bond Theme. Earlier prints on VHS use an instrumental version of Thunderball.
CBS/FOX video version omits the scene immediately after Bond traps Lippe in the sauna, where Bond is massaging Pat with the mink glove.
On some versions of the 1993-era MGM/UA VHS release (stock M202729), Sean Connery's name (as well as Broccoli & Saltzman) does not appear in the opening credits.
The documentary "Behind the Scenes with Thunderball" shows part of the original opening credits with the unused "Mr Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" theme song. The credits design is identical to the final film.
The second audio commentary track on the special edition DVD not only includes comments from editor Peter Hunt and screenwriter John Hopkins, but also several alternate audio cues. For example, the original title song, "Mr. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang," is heard in its entirety over the opening credits. The track also includes some scenes dubbed into other languages, and snippits dialouge from Largo and Domino before they were dubbed over by voice artists.
Broadcasts on ABC in the mid-1970s featured a censored version of the gunbarrel opening that omitted all footage of Connery walking across the screen and firing. Instead, all viewers saw were the initial dots moving across the screen, then a cut to the start of the pre-credits sequence.
The UK cinema release was cut to receive an "A" rating to remove a shot of Bond stroking Patricia with a mink glove. All video releases are restored and uncut.
According to the Special Edition DVD version of "Thunderball", there are a few versions of the film out there. In different versions, Bond says a different line when he escapes from Largo's shark pool. Some versions also feature a comment that Felix makes when he and Bond see a manta-ray from the helicopter. It's not in the DVD. There are also alternate takes of a scene with Largo on his boat in different versions. Many of the versions released on VHS did not feature the original score for the underwater battle at the climax. [In fact ALL the above differences - plus the use of the instrumental Thunderball theme during the closing credits - appear in the 1992 MGM/UA UK VHS release. This suggests that rather than several different versions, there are 2 alternative cuts].