Rumors have swirled for more than a year. Does the “Snyder Cut” of Justice League actually exist? It’s something of a conspiracy theory on the internet. A famed, possibly nonexistent version of a critically and commercially annihilated film. But Zack Snyder just came out of the woodwork to finally set the rumors straight. Does the “Snyder Cut” exist? “Of course it does.”
Snyder shared the confirmation in a post on the social media platform Vero, which fans screen-capped and shared on Twitter. The image shows a picture of a film canister reading “JL Director’s Cut.” There’s even a runtime listed of 214 minutes. This is the first time the director has officially confirmed the existence of a director’s cut of Justice League, which had a famously troubled production history that culminated in his leaving the project.
— robliefeld (@robertliefeld) December 4, 2019
If you’re not familiar with the saga of the Snyder Cut, here’s a condensed version. Zack Snyder was hired to make an Avengers-style crossover movie for DC superhero characters at Warner Bros. He was already immersed in these characters after directing Man of Steel and Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice.
The set for Justice League was allegedly troubled from the onset; script rewrites and rumors of studio dissatisfaction with Snyder’s footage and overall direction. Unfortunately, the film was also marred by a terrible personal tragedy, when Snyder’s daughter passed away. He stepped away from the project in post-production and was replaced by Avengers director Joss Whedon, who filmed new scenes and reworked the movie in editing.
The final product was a 120 minute flop that didn’t even break even at the box office, despite being one of the most expensive films ever made. It was a huge critical disappointment as well, leaving fans baffled. Rumors started swirling of a director’s cut that would “improve” the troubled film and show the original director’s true vision for the story. But did this Snyder Cut actually exist and would it ever see the light of day?
The trades seemingly shot down those suspicions. If the Snyder Cut did exist, it wasn’t likely to get a theatrical or home media release. “There’s little appetite at the studio for spending the millions of dollars it would require to finish visual effects and editing work on Snyder’s version, particularly as Justice League was a commercial disaster,” a source told Variety just last week. “There are currently no plans to release a Snyder version either in theaters or on HBO Max.”
So what does this cryptic Vero post from Snyder mean? Maybe he has a cut but it’s just sitting on a shelf somewhere, gathering dust. The fact that it has a runtime is curious—it implies some sort of completed cut, even if the CGI effects aren’t sorted out. Is this why a handful of DC actors, like Ben Affleck and Gal Gadot, recently called for the release of the Snyder Cut on social media? What is going on?
Your guess is as good as ours. It looks like the mystery of the Snyder Cut rages ever on.
Featured Image: Warner Bros.