The DCEU is more than familiar with poorly-rendered CGI villains having brought Enchantress and Incubus to such unconvincing life in Suicide Squad, not to mention the bizarre and distracting decision to paste David Thewlis’ face onto Ares’ hulking pixelated body in Wonder Woman‘s overblown climax, but the worst offender of all is arguably Justice League‘s Steppenwolf.
For a movie that cost $300 million to produce after Joss Whedon’s extensive reshoots, the effects are inconsistent and the end result was a frustratingly bland and one-dimensional villain that barely stood out against the grim and gritty backdrop, while the character himself didn’t pose much of a threat to the franchise’s all-star team in the grand scheme of things.
Luckily, one of the many changes that Zack Snyder has made to his cut of Justice League is giving Steppenwolf a complete makeover, and he already looks much better and more imposing. In a recent interview, though, the filmmaker admitted that Warner Bros. were very much against his original design for the big bad, thinking that he was a little too scary for audiences to handle.
“There were discussions and a lot of back and forth about the new design and the creation of this new design. I think the initial thought was that he was a little too scary and a little too alien and a little too intense. I personally thought he was awesome and that he represented a real threat, and does represent a real threat, not just to the Justice League, but to the entire planet. I think he looks amazing and that the team has done a great job.”
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The old saying goes that heroes are only as good as the villains they come up against, so it was no wonder that the theatrical edition of Justice League turned out to be such a disappointment. Not only is Steppenwolf back in the all-new version of the pic, though, and with the appearance of someone that actually poses a major obstacle for the movie’s dysfunctional titular troupe of billionaires, aliens and metahumans to overcome, but we’ll also be getting to see his boss Darkseid as Snyder delivers a completely different experience from the brief two-hour blockbuster that let so many people down when it was first released three years ago.