Now that he's released the Snyder Cut, director Zack Snyder might finally "take a look" at the theatrically released version of Justice League. When the director and Deborah Snyder, his wife and producing partner, stepped away from their superhero ensemble in May 2017 to deal with a family tragedy, studio Warner Bros. tapped Avengers director Joss Whedon to oversee post-production and direct reshoots. The subsequent product released into theaters in November 2017 was labeled by insiders as "a Frankenstein" of a movie — one unnamed studio executive privately called it a "piece of sh-t" — and it's a version that Zack Snyder still has never watched nearly four years later.
"Because I haven't seen the theatrical version of the movie, and how it ended up, I was never sure — and I'm sure not, maybe at some point I'll take a look at it — but I'm still not exactly sure what roles were maybe diminished or removed," the Snyder Cut director told IMDb. "I think, of course, number one on the list is Ray Fisher's Cyborg story being really central to the sort of entire movie."
Snyder is aware of some changes, of course, like the botched digital surgery used to erase a mustache from the supposed-to-be-cleanshaven face of Superman (Henry Cavill), or the significantly pared-down role for cybernetic superhero Victor Stone (Fisher).
In February, Snyder told Vanity Fair that both his wife and executive producer Christopher Nolan told him years ago that he "can never see that movie" they screened in late 2017. Deborah said at the time: "Because I knew it would break his heart."
"I feel like in the shorter version, you got a snapshot of who [the heroes] were. And I think in order to care about them at the end, in order for their arcs to be completed, you have to understand really what their conflicts were and what they went through to finally become the heroes that we see at the end of the movie," the producer told IMDb. "I think the hard thing, without even [passing] judgment on the movie, was to just sit in a theater and watch it for the first time because it just wasn't what we set out to do. It wasn't Zack's vision, it was so vastly different."
Now the producer and her husband are excited, with a side of disbelief, that they finally get to bring audiences Zack Snyder's Justice League.
"When you work so hard, and I think for Zack and I, it's very personal. You're spending years — and I mean we've spent 11 years working with these characters, so you're super invested," she said. "I think when you see things that are very different, you know, it's hard to do, and I just felt like he didn't need to see it. I think now, having completed his vision of the film and where we sit now, it's a different story because it's a story that actually got told. So who knows? Maybe he will someday."
As for why the director never disavowed a version of the movie that had his name on it — despite not being 100% his — Snyder explained in a recent interview, "My cast, I love them, and I really just want the best for them. So it was really just about me saying [I support them]. I was confident that the movie wasn't what I had intended, but I also felt like my sort of fight had been taken [after the death of daughter Autumn Snyder]. So I kind of let it be what it was."
Starring Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Gal Gadot, Jason Momoa, Ezra Miller, Ray Fisher, Ciarán Hinds, Ray Porter, Joe Manganiello, and Jared Leto, Zack Snyder's Justice League is now streaming on HBO Max.