While Zack Snyder received his chance to reconstruct and see Justice League re-released how he saw fit, the filmmaker and his other DCEU projects have still received criticism over the years. In particular, the superhero crossover that helped launch the DCEU – Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice – has received criticism for just being far too dark of a superhero movie. Now screenwriter Chris Terrio has defended his screenplay for the film as well as Justice League, blaming studio interference for the end results. As a way to prove this, he reveals that Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice actually had a much more disturbing ending when he signed on.
Here’s what Chris Terrio specifically had to say while speaking with Vanity Fair:
“The studio seemed to take this position after BvS that my writing was too dark and that this was their problem. But what they didn’t mention was that, for example, in the draft of the Batman/Superman script that W.B. had developed—[which was] the draft I was handed when I joined the project—Batman was not only branding criminals with a bat brand, he also ended the movie by branding Lex Luthor.”
He further explained how he spoke with Warner Bros about the ending. He insisted that they couldn’t let the film end in such a way because it left Batman in a strangely dark manner. Terrio believed that Batman needed to actually develop and change his ways by the end of the film. As stated:
“That ending was a point over which I explicitly went to the mat with the studio again and again. I argued that Batman cannot end the movie continuing this behavior, which amounted to torture, because then the movie was endorsing what he did. […] It’s one thing if Batman begins the movie as a dark version of himself whom we don’t recognize, but he has to see the error of his ways and remember his better self in the course of the movie.”
Ultimately, Terrio did manage to have the ending to Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice changed. But for better or worse is up to fans to decide. In any case, it looks like Zack Snyder won’t be heading any other DC projects any time soon – so perhaps it’s best everyone moves on to the future.