The tie-in book Justice League: The Art of the Film has revealed a little more about Steppenwolf and his "Electro Axe." The CGI alien Steppenwolf, voiced by Ciaran Hinds, was the central villain in Justice League and one of the most commonly criticised elements in this divisive DC team-up movie. If you’ve seen the movie, you’ll remember that his weapon of choice was destroyed in the third act, shortly before Steppenwolf was dispatched altogether.
Now that Justice League has arrived in theatres, talk has turned from pre-release hype to a full-on post-mortem analysis. Fans have pored over the movie, wondering how much of Justice League was shot by Zack Snyder and which scenes were the work of his late-in-the-day replacement Joss Whedon. In terms of villainy, fans have learned since the release of Justice League that another bad guy was meant to appear at one point: Dessad, a loyal follower of Darkseid, originally had a role in the film.
Delving into Justice League: The Art of the Film has thrown up even more fresh details for fans, offering further insights into how Justice League changed during production. This quote, from Steppenwolf actor Ciaran Hinds, makes it sound like his character’s weapon had a story of its own that ultimately didn’t get told:
“Steppenwolf’s real powers are wielded through this extraordinary weapon he has, the Electro Axe, which is almost like a part of him. It creates mayhem and decimates everything around it. Even when it’s at rest, it looks threatening.”
Clearly, a lot more thought went into the Electro Axe than you would have expected after seeing the film. It seems like a generic weapon for a forgettable villain, but the people behind the scenes clearly intended for a more memorable and epic feel. Words like ‘mayhem’, ‘extraordinary’, ‘threatening’ and ‘decimates’ are a lot more impactful than anything Steppenwolf's weapon did in the finished movie. It also sounds like the weapon was more intrinsic to Steppenwolf's powers and backstory than his disappointing scenes in the movie let on.
However, it would be untrue to say that Steppenwolf didn’t have any good moments in the film. The flashback battle between Steppenwolf’s forces and the united clans of Earth (including the humans, Amazons, and Atlanteans - along with some help from otherworldly friends) was a true standout sequence. But even in that battle, it wasn’t clear that there was anything particularly special – or ‘electro’ related – about Steppenwolf’s weapon. Clearly, there are multiple layers to the Justice League film that never made it onto the screen.
Source: Justice League: The Art of the Film
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