These days, every big budget comic book movie is met with speculation about the amount of “studio interference” involved in production, but with Justice League, this speculation is augmented by the question of where director Zack Snyder’s work ends, and where the additional material and reshoots of Joss Whedon begins.
This is because Snyder had to depart the project after filming had ended, and Whedon – who had already been working on the script – was drafted in to handle post-production and reshoots. Producer Charles Roven subsequently conceded that the theatrical release consisted of about 15-20% Joss Whedon footage, but we suspect that might be underselling it a bit.
Fans are already petitioning Warner Bros. for a Director’s Cut – that online petition has so far garnered more than 140,000 signatures – while Aquaman himself, Jason Momoa, believes there is enough leftover footage to make a second movie. Perhaps we’ll see Zack Snyder’s version on home video, then? It’s possible, and if this new piece of evidence is to be believed, then the studio does, at the very least, have the director’s original cut sitting around somewhere.
A Reddit user has drawn our attention to a Tweet from cinematographer Larry Fong from back in February, where he posted a photo of Zack Snyder working on the digital intermediate for Justice League, which is done once the film is locked and editing is complete. Take a look for yourself and see what you make of it:
This is hardly definitive proof of a fully finished cut of Snyder’s version existing, but it’s intriguing to be sure and is only more fuel to add to the already very large fire surrounding the debate. Unfortunately, the studio hasn’t commented yet on whether or not we’ll ever get to see Snyder’s original vision, but with the online petition for them to release it only growing bigger and bigger by the day, and demand for a Director’s Cut really heating up, Warner Bros. would be foolish if they didn’t give us an alternate version of Justice League. Not to mention they risk losing a lot of fans if they don’t.
Plus, much like the Ultimate Edition of Batman V Superman before it, it’ll open up another stream of revenue for WB. And lord knows the studio needs it now, considering JL may wind up losing $100 million when all is said and done.