Zack Snyder’s Justice League Theatrical Cut Was ‘Unwatchable’ & ‘Joyless,’ According to Report

Divisive director Zack Snyder’s original theatrical cut of Justice League has been described as “joyless” and “unwatchable” in a new report detailing the backstage drama of bringing the DC superhero team to life on the silver screen. The report, which comes courtesy of Rolling Stone, reveals some of what went on behind the scenes of Justice League and the disagreements that occurred between Zack Snyder and the studio.

“On May 5, 2017, Snyder screened his final version of Justice League on the Burbank lot for all of the studio’s department heads. It clocked in at two hours and 18 minutes. One source familiar with that cut called it “unwatchable” and “joyless.” Meanwhile, Whedon, the creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, was prepping to direct reshoots in the summer so that the film could make its November 2017 release date.”

While the description of “joyless” is unlikely to come as too much of a surprise to both Snyder fans and detractors, thanks to the filmmaker’s love for making things all dark and gloomy, the use of the word “unwatchable” is sure to hit hard. Especially when what hit theaters in 2017 failed spectacularly to fix this criticism…


The report reveals that Justice League was envisioned as “DC’s answer to Marvel’s all-star superhero juggernaut The Avengers,” hence why The Avengers director Joss Whedon was brought in. Executives at the studio had major issues with Snyder’s vision for Justice League, feeling that the movie “was convoluted and still too long at more than two-and-a-half hours.”

Zack Snyder’s Cut Was Deemed a ‘Disaster’ and a ‘Full-On Failure’

Warner Bros. Pictures

“The movie was deemed “a disaster” and “full-on failure” by those in the room, and, as a result, the studio pivoted and enlisted Whedon to come on as a writer and consultant, according to multiple knowledgeable sources.”

Snyder was intended to be the architect of the DC Cinematic Universe, but after showing another cut of Justice League that “was still well over two hours,” Whedon provided notes which some say Snyder “wasn’t receptive.”

Tragically, Snyder was ultimately forced to walk away from Justice League following the death of his daughter. Following this, Warner Bros. Went ahead with Joss Whedon’s reshoots, which were largely used to bring a lighter tone to the movie, and the rest is cinematic history.

Since then, a huge fan-led campaign that called for the studio to release The Snyder Cut has emerged successful, with Zack Snyder able to bring his vision for the Justice League movie to the masses. While the movie was much better received than what landed in theaters in 2017, further details have somewhat taken the shine off of the campaign. The same report has claimed that the social media campaign was heavily bolstered by bots, concluding that at least 13 percent of the accounts used to discuss the release of The Snyder Cut were fake.

Snyder has now responded to these claims saying, “As an artist, it was fulfilling to be able to finally see my vision realized after such a difficult time in my life and for it to be so well received.” He adds that he is “grateful to both the fan community and Warner Bros. for allowing this to happen,” and hopes “that all the good work the fandom has done is being represented.”