After debuting in over 4,000 theatres, JL (Justice League) opened to $96M (domestic) in its opening weekend, which came in under the forecasted $120M figure. Even though it topped the box office that weekend and came in at the #1 spot – it’s a lot less than I predicted myself. This actually made less than Suicide Squad. #WTF

If you weren’t aware, a lot happened during the filming of JL. Favour has not fortuned the making of this movie. Production has been hit with so many obstacles which have been evident in the final product.

The following is what has been happening to the best of ‘my’ knowledge. Let’s take a peek behind the scenes…

HARWOOD
Zack Snyder and co.

THE DIRECTOR

Probably the biggest influence on any production. The Director.

In this case, the responsibility falls on the shoulders of Zack Snyder.

Zack
Must not be easy being Zack.

Zack Snyder has been the man heading up the vision for the DC Universe in the last 5 years and overall, the response hasn’t been as positive as hoped. Most movies with him at the forefront, has been on the receiving end of criticisms and a slight lack of faith.

Apparently, during production of JL, Warner Bros had issues with the direction Snyder was taking the movie after BVS (Batman vs Superman). As a result, Snyder was asked to stop shooting then rewrite the script.  Even then, Warner Bros didn’t like it. Executives felt that he had to make progress with the lighter elements.

Apart from pressure from the studio, Snyder had personal issues he had to deal. Earlier in the year, Snyders daughter had committed suicide. #RIP. The press had respected this tragedy and stories were not released to the public. However, it eventually came to light when Zack decided to step away from the production of the movie and spend time with his family.

Enter Whedon.

Joss
Kinda easier being Joss.

If you don’t know who Joss Whedon is, he is responsible for the first 2 Avengers movies and Buffy The Vampire Slayer. Well known and beloved, Whedon is known to be one of the best out there.

So late in production, Whedon had the impossible task of continuing to complete the film. This meant, working with what Snyder had already put together as well as writing scenes for significant re-shoots. While sticking to release date window. Tough for anyone to do.

This film is a result of 2 directors with varying visions and a production nightmare. Out of the 2 directors involved who do you think takes the blame for what has turned out to be a ‘failure’?

THE RUNTIME

The project had a mandated 2-hour runtime. Keep in mind that this was mandated before the movie was even made (or finished). The CEO of Warner Bros ‘Kevin Tsujihara’ made it clear that this had to happen.

If you are familiar with Snyders movies, they do tend to run on longer than the ‘average’ movie. Have you seen Watchmen? Jeez. Bring snacks and a sleeping bag.

In reference to the previous DCEU movie (Batman vs Superman) the film had an extended cut which added 30 mins. That’s on top of the 151 minutes shown in the theatrical release. Um, that’s 3 hours in total if anyone’s counting.

I believe the aim of the mandated run-time was to increase the viewing times available at screenings to encourage spend at the theaters. Longer movies get played less at the cinema, thus you risk hurting your own box office numbers. It may have had a strategical aim to sharpen Snyders story telling as he tends to use long run-times to conclude his stories.

Regardless of the motive, I think this was to the detriment of the movie. You lose moments because of this and force the Director to miss out on moments in the story that they want to tell.  If you want to bring a Comicbook to life, you need to leave the creatives to do their job.

By rushing things, details have been thrown to the wayside and things made up on the way. It hasn’t done them any favours. I just hope they start to get things aligned moving forward.

BACKPEDALLING

Remember the unite the seven poster with Aquaman? It was one of the first promotional images that we get a look at while the movies began production.

UTS

This ignited talk of the ‘7’ justice league members; Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Aquaman, Cyborg… and ??? This was a huge point of discussion. who was the 7th member? Is it Green Lantern? Martian Manhunter? Who?

However, all these theories had been debunked when it was revealed that it was in fact a reference to the ‘Seven Seas’ and will play onto the Aquaman movies.

lying
Oh swear?

This frustrated me and others who were looking forward to seeing another JL member. What this shows is a lack on concrete vision in the writing room for the DCEU.

(SPOILERS for the Justice League!) Although it was good to get confirmation that Green lanterns DO exist in the DCEU. By the way – this was a quote which was in the trailer had been removed from the film. So annoying.

CUT SCENES

My goodness. From re-watching the trailers, you can see a lot is missing from this film. What happened to the clips of Cyborg in college? When Steppenwiolf mentioned the Green Lanterns?

All missing. Apparently there’s a clip out on the web of Barry Allen (The Flash) saving Iris West. Mad.

2 tears in a bucket. I wasn’t gonna put the clip in… but check it out here!

Also, the black Superman suit. This got to me the most. SMH.

HCS
Yeah.. this suit never happened.

I expected to see this suit in the film. Oh well. Maybe I’ll catch it on the extended DVD version.

THE VISUALS

Oh yeah. Let’s quickly talk about this. Supermans face. That looked mad weird, right? There’s a reason for it. After JL had finished filming, Henry Cavill went onto shoot MI6. In this role, he plays the villain and he has a moustache. So, by the time it was announced that reshoots for JL were going to be taking place, Cavill was sporting the full ‘stache. Unfortunately, he had been contracted to keep it for the role. So throughout reshoots for JL, Cavill had the ‘stache.

SMM
If you think this is weird…

This moustache proved to be the kryptonite to the visual effect artists on the movie as it was clear as day that Superman looked weird AF!

SMM2
… dude! wth?!

FINAL THOUGHTS

This film was the product of 2 creators and a whirlwind of complications.

With that being said, everyone is now picking apart the movie and attempting to guess who was responsible for what. Perhaps with some shots it may be clear who was behind the camera. However, it is blatant which scenes were part of the re-shoot! This again brings the graphics into question as the visual quality were mismatched at times. This kind of thing can really pull people out of the movie and disrupt their experience.

To try and watch a movie while deciding who worked on what, is a difficult task. So rather than do that, why not just try and just enjoy the movie?

With all things considered… I think this JL movie was a very small step in the direction. Not necessarily forward. But in the right direction.

I mean could things get any worse behind the scenes of Justice League?

 

Like I mentioned, this is just to the best of my knowledge.

There may be more things that have taken place. Regardless, it is clear that the movie was destined to stumble.

Hopefully Warner Bros and DC can find their feet again in a flash.

Peace DA.

Follow me on Twitter – @ajukobe

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