When news broke last week that HBO Max was going to release Zack Snyder's Justice League, an entire segment of fandom rejoiced. They had won, they were right, the infamous Snyder Cut was real, and this was all the proof they needed. Only that is very much not the case, and the existence of Zack Snyder's Justice League is proof that the Snyder cut does not and never has existed. Fans have long thought that there was a complete or near-complete version of the movie sitting in a vault somewhere in Warner Bros., but that is not the case. and WarnerMedia chairman and HBO Max head Bob Greenblatt more or less confirmed in a new interview. He was on the Recode Media podcast (text thanks to /Film), and he was speaking about the project and why it took so long to get greenlit. Greenblatt not only confirmed that the Snyder Cut never existed but that bringing Zack Snyder's Justice League to life is a much bigger and more expensive undertaking than anyone seems to realize.
"It's been months of discussions with Zack and the producers to figure out how to do it," Greenblatt said. "Because it isn't as easy as just going into the vault and there's a Snyder Cut sitting there to put out…it does not exist. Zack is actually building it, and it's complex. Including – and I don't want to get into too much detail that we haven't already talked about yet – but new effects shots. It's a radical rethinking of that movie, and it's complicated and wildly expensive, of course a number I won't quote…I'll just say I wish it was just $30 million…It's an enormous undertaking and very complex."
For anyone looking for an idea of what kind of money that is, The Invisible Man, which came out earlier this year, was made with a budget of $9 million. There are still talks about whether or not this is going to be a mini-series or a long movie [though if we were hedging our bets, we're going with four-part mini-series], but that is still a considerable amount of money. We're also in unknown territory as far as union goes, which Greenblatt also pointed out.
"We had to go to the unions and get certain things clear with them about what we were doing," he continued. "Is the Snyder Cut a new movie, or is it a recut? There's lots of complexity that the fan [community] doesn't know about."
So, it was not as simple as popping a reel into a streaming service and hitting the play button. This project is a lot bigger, more complex, both legally and financially, than the loudest fans were demanding. We here at Bleeding Cool are curious to see what kind of movie Snyder would have made if a terrible tragedy hadn't upended everything. We still send our best to Zack and Deborah Snyder and their family because the pain of losing someone to suicide never really goes away, and going back on this project probably brought back a lot of bad memories of an extremely painful time in their lives.
As for the internet, they seem to have thrown their support David Ayer and getting his version of Suicide Squad released next. Maybe don't send threats to critics and journalists this time, and you won't become a joke. Zack Snyder's Justice League will premiere on HBO Max sometime in 2021.