Though it’s said that the Justice League cut currently playing in theaters is about 80% Zack Snyder’s version, more and more reports are coming out to reveal that that’s not the case. Wonder Woman herself, Gal Gadot, recently said back in August that Whedon was just following Snyder’s vision:
“Look, Joss, to my understanding, was Zack’s choice to finish the movie. And the tone can’t be completely different because the movie was already shot. Joss is just fine-tuning.”
A new report from THR details how composer Danny Elfman had to change the film’s score at the last second:
“I got the call from Joss very last second,” Elfman tells Heat Vision. “I got the call and it was, ‘You have to decide now and then go to work tomorrow.’”
It’s said that things were so last minute, he wasn’t even composing to actual footage at times:
“I had a lot of storyboards in place of action. There would be full scenes and then a five-minute sequence of storyboards. Honestly, it was like working on an animated film,” says Elman. “I didn’t score any of the unused footage, the movie that came out is the movie I scored, it was just in very rough form.”
“I twisted it and my Batman theme… the DNA is there, but the themes aren’t necessarily obvious in the film. Except for one specific moment in the final battle. Joss said, ‘Let’s do it [Batman’s theme] on the nose. Fans love this kind of stuff.’”
He also had some pretty strong words for reboots:
“The whole concept that every time a superhero franchise is rebooted with a new director, then you have to start the music from scratch is a bullshit idea. It’s only for the ego of the director or the composer,” says Elfman. “They need to learn the incredible lesson that Star Wars and James Bond have known for ages, which is that keeping these musical connections alive is incredibly satisfying for the people who see those films.”
He said he met with Warner Bros. executives who surprisingly liked his new take:
“I met with all the producers and the Warner Brothers/DC executives, knowing they were just going to rip apart my cues or request different takes, but they were incredibly supportive and didn’t want drastic alterations. That never happens!”
The original score for the film by Junkie XL has actually made it’s way online, and is at the bottom of the page.
As we mentioned above, producer Charles Roven did say that the theatrical cut is mainly Zack Snyder’s:
“The goal is to make sure when you’re watching the movie, it all feels cohesive. That imprint that Joss had, some aspect of it is going to come out in the direction, but the actors are already pretty much down the road on their arcs. Let’s just say 80, 85 percent of the movie is what was originally shot. There’s only so much you can do with other 15, 20 percent of the movie.”
Snyder revealed that once he said he had left the film altogether, he was no longer involved:
“It’d be unfair in a lot of ways. I’m at a place where I feel excited about it and I’m happy for my guys and I love these people that are working on it, and they’re my family and I think they’re doing an amazing job. But I’ve kind of just let them do their thing.”
He also recently added that he hasn’t actually seen the film that’s out:
“I will be honest, I have not seen the film since I stepped away. You know I love these characters. I wish only I could only finish it for you and the others who love MOS, BvS.”
Fans have petitioned Warner Bros. for a director’s cut of the film from Zack Snyder, but that apparently isn’t too likely. It’s obvious that WB plans on going in a “lighter” direction with the likes of Joss Whedon at the helm, and if Justice League 2 happens, don’t be surprised if Whedon is the director for it.
With deleted scenes already leaking on the internet, and fans being very vocal about seeing Snyder’s cut, it’d be hard to see Warner Bros. not release his extended version at some point. Though, this is WB we’re talking about. If being more like the Marvel Cinematic Universe is their ultimate goal, they could end up alienating some fans.
With actors and producers saying different things about the movie, it’s not exactly clear what went on behind the scenes, but it is clear that we didn’t get Snyder’s initial cut.