Earlier this year came the announcement that Zack Snyder’s Justice League would get its demanded debut exclusivey on HBOMax. The announcement came with the details that there would be a $20 million investment in order to finish post-production on the “already completed” principal photography.
As of yesterday it seems things have changed! The Snyder Cut is now set to receive $70 million that includes a week of reshoots with the main cast… Let’s break this down.
1:The Issue: Look, let’s just address the elephant in the room; the studio did not like what Snyder originally created. They were not on board for Batman v Superman, the film had mixed responses from fans, and overwhelming negative reviews from critics.
(To be fair, the theatrical cut of BvS was an absolute nightmare. The “ultimate edition” is not a bonus version of that film; it IS the film. The theatrical cut missed so much of the meat to that story that it ended up not making any sense when you saw it in theaters. I do think the film would have performed better if the studio had just allowed the original three-hour runtime to stand. I digress.)
The point is the studio didn’t approve of that movie and had serious anxiety over Justice League as Snyder went into production not long afer BvS hit theaters. Despite the fact that a majority of Snyder’s version has been shot it’s not a stretch to assume that the studio still wants significant tweeks in order to make sure the project is as profitable for the streaming service as possible. For example…
2: Set Up the Future: Some may have forgotten, but after BvS underperformed critically the originally intended two-part ‘Justice League’ was immediately reduced to a one movie deal. That is a huge hit against the vision that Snyder had intended- not to mention it had to be quite the wrench in the wheel considering, once again, that Justice League went into production not long after BvS hit theaters; adjustments had to have been happening on set to satsify the studio.
The fan momentum to get Snyder’s version of the film, which has stayed strong for the last three years, may also pave the way for Snyder to tell his two-part story as originally intended after all.
This means, ironically, that additional photography is being requested to add to the third act and ensure it leaves the pieces in place for the sequel the studio insisted they didn’t want back in 2016. Life is funny.
3:Four Episode Miniseries Reformatting: I dont believe this is going to take too much of that large sum, but the fact that the film will indeed be a four-hour runtime cut into one hour episodes might mean they need to shoot small scenes to make the week to week transition more cohesive.
3: Green Lantern and Martian Manhunter: I am very confident that a large portion of this money is going into giving these two characters larger roles. Who will be the Green Lantern? There’s rumors it will be Ryan Reynolds reprising his role. I am really hoping that isn’t the case as my sincerest hope is for John Stewart; more on that later.
Again, they want to make sure this four episode miniseries DELIVERS. Giving audiences a proper Green Lantern in the film can certainly help the hype.
Alongside the Lantern is also Harry Lennix’s Martian Manhunter. Snyder revealed not too long ago that he had shot just about everything of his movie except Lennix’s reveal. Since none of those key scenes were shot it is safe to assume they’re going to be expanding on his role in the series.
With $70 million going into the project, and additional footage being shot next month, there is still no telling when we can expect Justice League to drop in 2021. If Warner wanted to be petty they could certainly release it the weekend of Black Widow’s new theatrical release date? Time will tell.