It's no secret by now that Justice League was something of a letdown for DC movie fans, and audiences in general. Even though it was packed with star power, and got an early boost from the breakout success of Wonder Woman, Justice League ended up being a mess of a film, lost somewhere between Zack Snyder's original vision, and the studio film that Avengers director Joss Whedon tried to piece together.
Now there's a new report that will like get DC fans in an uproar: reportedly, Warner Bros. always expected there would be big blowback against Justice League. As Mario-Francisco Robles over at Revenge of the Fans reports:
"I remember speaking to an insider in the weeks following Justice League‘s release and them saying they “expected this.” While they conceded the fallout was, perhaps, a bit worse than anticipated, they knew that this thing was going to be a bump in the road. The studio just didn’t want to spend another dime on the film, considering all the effort that had gone into it already. They wanted to simply get it out there, get it over with, and move on to the next phase of DCU films which would act as a distinct course correction."
The cynical part about this alleged version of events is that the studio - after having meddled with Snyder's version of Justice League so extensively - still couldn't pull it together, and instead just dumped the movie into theaters, under the pretense of offering a worthwhile movie experience. Before you try to argue that this is basically the M.O. of any movie studio, let's take a minute to recall the carefully-orchestrated first screenings, or that review embargo that saw Rotten Tomatoes bend all of its usual rules and formats for a "special event reveal" of Justice League's unfavorable score.
Combined with rumors and reports like the one above, this all smacks of a conscious effort by the studio to use duplicitous tactics to sell a failed film. And it worked, to certain extent! Despite Justice League being the lowest-earning DC Extended Universe film, it still managed to push Time Warner Q4 earnings to nice year-over-year gains.
Justice League will be available on Digital HD on February 13th, and Blu-ray on March 13th. The film will be followed in the DC Extended Universe by Aquaman on December 21st, Shazam on April 5, 2019, Wonder Woman 2 on November 1, 2019, Cyborg in 2020, and Green Lantern Corpsin 2020.