Arts & Entertainment

The New Cut of Justice League on HBO Max Is Rounding Up The Original Cast 

Director Zack Snyder has contacted the cast to let them know that they may be needed for additional work.

A few hours ago, thousands of little explosions happened around the world as comic nerds and film geeks combusted upon learning that the alternate cut of Justice League will be released on HBO Max in 2021. 

Zack Snyder, the original director of the 2017 superhero film, confirmed the existence of the version during a live Q&A, while HBO Max confirmed the news of its release on Twitter. So yes, it is happening. Snyder said so:

To recap, Snyder stepped away from the film’s editing and post-production phases because of a personal tragedy. Joss Whedon, notably from that other superhero universe (he directed Marvel’s The Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron), was brought in to complete the project. And so Snyder’s original vision, a dark take on DC’s superheroes, was reshaped to fit Whedon’s humorous style. 

The patch-up job resulted in a film that was widely panned by critics and fans. The reviews were oof: “a senses-assaulting mess, an offense to good taste as well as basic narrative cohesion….,” said Slate; “a mix that neither congeals nor particularly makes you want to see more of them in future,” wrote The Hollywood Reporter; and “the single stupidest, big-budget superhero motion picture ever unleashed upon an unsuspecting public,” remarked the Chicago Daily Herald.

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There were jokes that didn’t land. There were the inexplicable arcs. There was Superman’s weird mouth, a digital abomination that was birthed because re-shoots caught beautiful person Henry Cavill already with facial hair, which he couldn’t shave off because of commitments to Mission: Impossible – Fallout. In short, Justice League was a mess.

Almost immediately fans mobilized to #ReleasetheSnyderCut. The movie’s actors, Ben Affleck (Batman), Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman), and Jason Momoa (Aquaman), also expressed their support, with Momoa using very emphatic language. On the second anniversary of Justice League’s release last November 17, the movement and its hashtag became a top worldwide trend. Which is probably what prompted Warner Bros. to explore the possibilities.

The Hollywood Reporter narrates the entire story of Justice League’s rebirth, starting with how Snyder received an early morning call last November to how the director pitched concepts for the project after screening the Snyder Cut to executives in February. 


More exciting details have emerged about the new release, including possibly releasing it as episodes (with cliffhangers!) instead of an almost four-hour cut. “[T]he Snyders are now in the midst of reassembling much of their original postproduction crew to score, cut, add new and finish old visual effects, and, yes, maybe bring back many of the actors to record additional dialogue, says THR.

The director, THR reports, has already contacted the cast to let them know about the project and that “their services may be needed.” The first call was made to Ray Fisher whose Cyborg storyline was limited in the 2017 film. 

Snyder, who has never watched the entirety of the released movie, says we’ve probably just seen a fourth of what he did in Justice League. He says to THR: “It will be an entirely new thing, and, especially talking to those who have seen the released movie, a new experience apart from that movies.” We’re looking forward to this one. 


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Clifford Olanday
Associate Editor, Esquire Philippines
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