Justice League: WB's Attempt To Hide The Snyder Cut Made It Bigger Than Ever

The Justice League Snyder Cut is rapidly gathering momentum, all of which could've been avoided if Warner Bros. had simply addressed the issue.

Henry Cavill as Clark Kent Superman in Justice League Warner Bros logo

Warner Bros. have largely ignored calls to release the Justice League Snyder cut, but this has only magnified attention around the issue. Released in 2017 as the culmination of the DCEU cinematic experiment, Justice League was dismissed by critics and performed badly at the box office, but that was only the beginning of the movie's problems, as fans have spent the past two years demanding an alternative cut. After the struggles endured by Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, Warner Bros. reportedly began making changes to Zack Snyder's Justice League vision. When Snyder was forced to step away from the project, even more sweeping alterations were made, with Joss Whedon leading extensive reshoots and remolding the script.

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Since Justice League proved so disappointing for many, there have been widespread calls for Snyder's original version to see the light of day. Images and snippets of information have been leaked by the director himself and various other figures attached to the production, making the vast differences between these two cuts very clear. The #ReleaseTheSnyderCut campaign has grown in intensity over recent months (raising money for suicide prevention charities in the process) and has even begun to attract cast members to its cause, including Ben Affleck and Gal Gadot. Unfortunately, the campaign has failed to incite a meaningful response from Warner Bros., who apparently remain unmoved on the issue.

Related: Justice League: Why Henry Cavill Hasn't Spoken Up About The Snyder Cut

Unsurprisingly, maintaining radio silence may have backfired on Warner Bros. It's a basic principle of psychology that the more a person tries not to think of something, the stronger that thought will become. In a similar vein, the more Warner Bros. refuse to address the Snyder Cut, the more mythical the unfinished movie feels, increasing hunger and determination among fans to continue campaigning. Despite numerous credible claims to the contrary, Warner Bros. have attempted to paint the existence of the Snyder Cut as an outlandish conspiracy. This is obviously another huge mistake, as if there's one thing comic book movie fans love more than superheroes, it's a good Hollywood conspiracy.

As a direct result of this lackluster response, the Snyder Cut has become somewhat of a cultural meme. Rob Liefeld referenced the topic in his Brigade comic, and otherwise unrelated areas of geekdom are now jumping on the bandwagon by using "Release the Snyder Cut" as a go-to geek phrase. The quote has now started permeating the mainstream, used in some cases by those with hardly any knowledge of the actual situation. Much like a teenager wearing a Metallica shirt despite only vaguely knowing the chorus to "Enter Sandman," however, this exposure gives the Snyder Cut even more publicity and reach.

Cast members calling for the release of an alternate cut that supposedly doesn't exist is, of course, embarrassing for Warner Bros., but things needn't have come so far. The studio has had ample opportunity to confirm an original cut of Justice League exists, and perhaps even explain why certain creative decisions were made. Warner Bros. also might've put the Snyder Cut out into the world as a DVD bonus, similar to the director's cut that came bundled with the home media release of Batman V. Superman (that many fans prefer, incidentally), but nothing of the sort has transpired.

The launch of the HBO Max streaming service offered yet another chance to silence calls for a Snyder Cut, this time at minimal expense and with very little to lose. If the Snyder Cut is great, the DCEU becomes cool again, if it's just as bad as the theatrical version, Warner Bros. are shown to have been right all along. Still, there has been no shifting in the Warner Bros., strategy, but the more they sit back and hope fans will forget about the Justice League Snyder Cut, the bigger the sense of inevitability around its release becomes.

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