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'Justice League' Cinematographer Says Black Superman Costume Exists, Was Cut From Film

Joseph Schmidt

12/06/2017

With both Zack Snyder and Joss Whedon involved in the production of Justice League (not to mention all of the Warner Bros. executives), there were a lot of scenes cut out of the final edit.

Fans were especially disappointed that Superman's black costume was not included in some form, especially after being teased by Henry Cavill earlier this year. But cinematographer Fabian Wagner revealed to Inverse that he did indeed shoot scenes with Supes back in black.

"There were [scenes shot]," Wagner said. "It’s a cool looking costume. Sadly we didn’t see that either in the final cut."

The costume is based on the "Death and Return of Superman" storyline from DC Comics in the '90s, which Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League loosely adapted. In the storyline, Superman dies after battling and defeating Doomsday, but later returns to take on the Cyborg Superman in a capeless black suit with a silver shield on the chest.

Cavill teased the costume in August with a photo on Instagram, showing an ornate Kryptonian design close up.

"Zack takes his time with telling the stories and I’ve always liked that about his movies. There are a few scenes that I was very much looking forward to seeing which unfortunately got cut," Wagner said.

Wagner's story differs greatly from the so-called visual effects "insider" who previously said there were no plans for Superman's black costume in Justice League. Of course, a cinematographer has greater access to a film's assets than one special effects company — productions usually hire various companies to tackle specific scenes, and once the cut was established Warner Bros. had probably moved on from the black costume.

So when an effects artist states the black suit was never in the cards, while a cinematographer says they filmed shots, we're inclined to go with the person actually on set.

Wagner also spoke about the cut scene from the San Diego Comic-Con trailer, where Alfred speaks to someone off camera and says "They said you come. Let's hope you're not too late."

"It was a great scene to shoot," Wagner said, but wouldn't reveal who Alfred was talking to or if it was supposed to be Superman. "It was one of my favorites and also didn’t make it."

Maybe we'll see it in the mythological "Snyder cut" that isn't supposed to exist either.

Justice League is in theaters now.

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