In an unprecedented move, a major Hollywood production studio has bent to the will of the fans! Warner Bros will finally release the Justice League Snyder Cut on their streaming service, HBO Max in 2021. The fan demand and #ReleaseTheSnyderCut movement, supported by the cast and director, lead to the movie finally releasing. Just yesterday, Cyborg actor Ray Fisher tweeted that he “forcefully” retracted his earlier praise of Joss Whedon and the theatrical Justice League. There’s no clear reason why, other than he knows what’s coming in this movie.
So, more than ever, we can’t help but wonder what’s exactly is in the Snyder Cut?
Justice League Snyder Cut With Additional Material Actually Not That Unprecedented
Image via HBO Max.
Studios giving into to fan feedback is not that unheard of. Fans helped revive TV shows or series that studios cancelled since the 60’s like Star Trek. Positive fan-reactions are also why sequels and franchises exist. Not to mention that even a different cut of the same movie is an idea that studios have done for years. There are many cuts of Superman movies, Alien movies, and at least three of Blade Runner. Still, Justice League is different due to the circumstances surrounding its production. The director left the project because of a family tragedy. Yet, a rumor circulated that Warner Bros. wanted Snyder gone before that, having lost faith in his vision for the shared DCEU.
Joss Whedon had to step in to complete the culmination of his shared universe that ended in Justice League. Albeit, Whedon’s film featured many changes and alterations to that original idea. After the poor critical reception of the movie in theatres, fans demanded to see Snyder’s original cut, with the #ReleaseTheSnyderCut movement. Now, after WB spends an additional $30 Million, fans will finally get to see that version.
So let’s take a look at what’s in the Snyder Cut that was missing from the original theatrical cut.
Cyborg’s Entire Storyline Ended Up On The Cutting Room Floor
Image via Screen Grab.
Perhaps this is why Ray Fisher has such harsh words for Joss Whedon. Zack Snyder always maintained that Ray Fisher’s Cyborg was the heart of his Justice League. So much so, that Snyder even called Fisher first after his Snyder Cut on HBO Max announcement. There was a lot of footage of Cyborg’s origin story in the original Justice League trailers. That footage outlined how the character went from a football player to an alien-technology-created cyborg after a devastating accident. They allude to all of this in Justice League, through dialogue between Cyborg and his father Silas Stone (Joe Morton). A VFX reel surfaced showcasing the deleted footage back in 2018. While the footage from Shade VFX is not available anymore, it’s still part of this tweet from Twitter user @Ser_Jon_Arryn.
Executives: The Snyder cut doesn’t exist.
VFX Companies: Hold my beer 🍺 pic.twitter.com/1pJs6wSmIf
— John Aaron Garza ⚪️ Nkl-n-D1med (@Ser_Jon_Arryn) July 24, 2018
So Cyborg’s origin story, especially details of how he is connected to the Mother Boxes, are cut from the movie. Without all of this backstory, the Cyborg we got was just a moody side-character, instead of the layered hero, dealing with superpowers that he considers deformities, that Snyder meant him to be. How he overcame that to become a full-fledged hero is probably why Snyder refers to the character as the ‘heart’ of the movie.
Darkseid Is Actually In The Justice League
Image via Zack Snyder’s Twitter.
The biggest change in the Snyder Cut will be the main villain of the movie. The original theatrical cut saw Steppenwolf (Ciaran Hinds) as the big bad, trying to collect the Mother Boxes to herald the arrival of— someone. The result was completely anti-climactic as it was a villain, who was the precursor to a bigger villain, that we never saw. Comics fans especially knew that Steppenwolf was just a steppin’ stone to the larger antagonist that is Darkseid. Initial reports presumed that the omission of Darkseid from Justice League was due to the original plans of a 2-part movie becoming just the one. However, it seems that the Snyder Cut always included Darkseid. And Snyder even confirmed that recently in the new Snyder Cut teaser trailer.
Are There More Green Lanterns In The Snyder Cut?
Image via Screen Grab.
In an early scene of the theatrical Justice League, a flashback shows us an epic battle with the Amazonians, Gods, and one Green Lantern, a member of an elite intergalactic force of superheroes. However, there is no mentioned of Green Lanterns afterwards. Snyder teased previously that there could have been more than one Lantern in his Snyder Cut. A VFX artist for Justice League reveals on Reddit how a post-credits sequence would have featured two famous Green Lanterns from the comics, Kilowag and Tomar-Re. The thread is since been deleted, but news reports of the thread still exist. Whether more Green Lanterns will appear in the Snyder Cut is still uncertain at this time.
The Atom Is Definitely In The Snyder Cut
Looks like Zack is back to work with Ryan Choi, Atom, in a small but important role in Justice League! How excited are you to see Atom? pic.twitter.com/TqRwmwH9Ao
— ReleaseTheSnyderCut (@RTSnyderCut) May 22, 2020
Another one of DC’s comic book superheroes will be appearing in the Snyder Cut. The character of Ryan Choi (Zheng Kai) will be appearing as one of the scientists helping Dr. Stone with the Mother Boxes. Choi is one of the characters to become The Atom in the DC comic book universe. While Choi doesn’t suit up as The Atom in Justice League, his inclusion definitely rounds out and fleshes out the DC universe that Snyder was creating since 2013 with Man Of Steel.
Martian Manhunter’s Fate In The Snyder Cut Is Unknown
Zack Snyder shared these storyboards today. One of long suspected rumors has turned out to be true. General Swanwick from Man of Steel is confirmed to be The Martian Manhunter J'onn Jonzz! pic.twitter.com/h5Cpkv8diX
— ReleaseTheSnyderCut (@RTSnyderCut) October 5, 2019
And speaking of Man Of Steel, one of the biggest surprises in Justice League was to continue from that first DCEU film. Snyder has revealed multiple times that General Stanwick (Harry Lennix) was the Martian Manhunter. Lennix has been a favorite of Snyder’s since Man Of Steel. Lennix even announced the Batman v. Superman sequel at SDCC with a dramatic reading of an excerpt from Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns.
Snyder described the reveal of Stanwick through storyboards, posted on his Vero account. The scene was with Lois Lane (Amy Adams) and Martha Kent (Diane Lane), after which Martha would transform into the Manhunter, and then into Stanwick. Even on paper, the scene sounds incredible. It’s still unknown if Martian Manhunter will appear in the Snyder Cut. However, I would think it would be relatively simple to get Lennix in for additional voice recording for a CGI Manhunter to be in the narrative.
The Set Ups To Other DCEU Movies That May Now Have Been Scrapped
Image via Zack Snyder’s Vero.
On top of everything else going on in Justice League, the movie would have also set up the solo movies releasing afterwards. Audiences were going to see a meet-cute between Barry Allen’s Flash (Ezra Miller) and his eventual love in Iris West (Kiersey Clemons). Vulko (Willem Defoe) and Mera’s (Amber Heard) appearances were to set up the subsequent Aquaman solo-movie. I doubt those cameos still exist, especially given Aquaman’s release and the Flash movie’s back and forth status. Yet, if Snyder shot those scenes, we’ll probably see them, even if they no longer make sense in the context of the DCEU as it is today.
Whatever Happened To Black Suit Superman?
One of the first-ever teases audiences got of Justice League in 2016, was an extreme close up of the Superman suit but in all black by Henry Cavill on his Instagram. This was a tease to a comic book storyline where Superman died, like in Batman v. Superman, but returned with a mullet and a full black suit. Snyder also revealed that the black suit was in the film only for Justice League to be completely devoid of it whatsoever. Later on Snyder did confirm, in comments on his Vero account that Superman dons the black suit in his cut of the movie. In the comments of another post, Snyder confirms that Superman actually wears the black suit for the entire third act as well. So now that Snyder is returning, I wonder if we will finally get black suit Superman?
What do you think about what’s in the Snyder Cut? Let me know in the comments below.
Shah Shahid is an entertainment writer, movie critic (so he thinks), host of the Split Screen Podcast (on Apple Podcasts & everywhere else) and filmy father on a mission to educate his girls on decades of film history. Armed with uncontrollable sarcasm and cautious optimism, Shah loves discussing film, television and comic book content until his wife’s eyes glaze over. So save her by engaging him on his own blog at BlankPageBeatdown.com or on Twitter @theshahshahid.