The road to Justice League arriving on the big screen was long and full of potholes. Even before Zack Snyder was ever attached to the project, George Miller's Justice League: Mortal was famously on the cusp of beginning its Austrailia shoot before production was delayed, leading to an eventual cancelation altogether. A few years later, Zack Snyder's success with Man of Steel convinced Warner Bros. to move forward with the team-up movie once again, green lighting Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice for Zack Snyder to bridge the gap from Man of Steel to a two-part Justice League team up.
Unfortunately, things were far from smooth sailing after Snyder's Batman v Superman was panned by critics and saw a less-than-anticipated (but still profitable) box office haul. WB considered replacing Snyder on the project, but he'd already spent so much time in planning and pre-production, and Justice League was scheduled to shoot mere weeks after BvS was released. Snyder stayed in the director's chair, but the movie saw some quick adjustments to accelerate the plan to lighten the tone after BvS's darker superhero conflict. Snyder oversaw 100% of Justice League's principal photography and completed significant work on his director's cut, but Warner Bros. executives were not happy with the direction things were going, so Joss Whedon was brought in to work on the movie.
In May of 2017, it was revealed that tragedy had struck the Snyder family and Zack would be stepping down from the director's chair, and Whedon would oversee additional rewrites, reshoots, and the rest of post-production. The movie that was eventually released was dogged by critics for its tonal mishmash, underdeveloped characters, poor CGI, and a number of other issues, resulting in a franchise-low box office haul.
Now, a new revelation alleges that Snyder was actually fired long before his official departure from the movie. If true, this information sheds light on a number of behind the scenes rumors and calls into question a good deal of the narrative surrounding Justice League's reshoots and post-production.
This Page: What We Were Told About Justice League's Production
What We Were Told About Justice League's Production
After Whedon took over production, Justice League producers were quick to claim that Whedon's reshoots were merely some additional scenes and that Snyder was the one to convince Whedon to come aboard in the first place, asking him to oversee the end of production and helping Zack "finish his vision." It wasn't long before rumors of massive reshoots began to spread, alleging that significant chunks of the movie would be redone, but it was quickly denied by the studio, painting the reshoots as a few weeks of routine pickup shoots typical of big blockbusters.
The rumors continued to come, the most pervasive of which suggested that Joss Whedon was using the reshoots to significantly lighten the movie's tone, but Gal Gadot said the "tone can't be completely different" and other sources confirmed that it was still following Snyder's overall vision.
Talk of Snyder's plan, vision, and tone would only get more pervasive during the movie's official promotional tour, where the cast reiterated that Justice League was still "Zack Snyder's Movie." Ben Affleck admitted that Justice League would be "a big change tonally" from what came before, but reiterated that the movie was "Zack’s DNA" and that after all his work in pre-production and principal photography, it wasn't possible for it to escape his influence.
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