Since the release of Justice League, a vocal subset of fans have demanded the release of the "Snyder Cut." The now-legendarily troubled production of Justice League culminated in director Zack Snyder leaving the project for personal reasons, with Joss Whedon coming on board to reshoot a huge chunk of the movie, as well as re-edit the film. The result was a film that received middling critical responses and disappointing box office returns.
However, over the years, the legend of the Snyder Cut, the original epic version of the film that Snyder intended to create, has only grown. It's a cut that either, depending on who you ask, sounds like an epic follow-up to his prior DC Extended Universe films or a colossal mess that was narrowly avoided. However, thanks to all the teases and hints that Snyder and other individuals have given over the years, we have a fairly good sense of what might've been in the Snyder Cut. Now, we're going to take a look back at everything we know to see what exactly the Snyder Cut had to offer.
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We know that the entire opening of Justice League was entirely different in the Snyder Cut. Many of Superman's scenes comprise of reshoots -- as evidenced by the presence of the now-infamous CGI mustache removal. In Superman's first scene in the movie, his mustache is clearly removed, which makes it clear that it was reshot.
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Following that, the film turns to Gotham City, where Batman encounters a Parademon.This might also be a reshoot, as it establishes a few key plot points relevant to the theatrical ending, but not the supposed Snyder Cut ending. The plot points in question are as follows: the Parademons smell fear and hate sonic noises, and neither of those elements come up in the Snyder Cut's alleged ending.
Multiple characters who had roles in the Snyder Cut had their parts dramatically trimmed or completely excised from the theatrical cut of Justice League.
Iris West, played by Kiersey Clemens, would have been rescued by the Flash in a scene that has leaked in its entirety. It's unclear how Iris would have factored into the plot, beyond, presumably, giving Barry Allen someone to talk to other than his dad in prison or the other superheroes.
Furthermore, Atlantis originally played a far larger role. Willem Dafoe's Vanko is removed entirely from the film, while Mera plays a very small role. Atlantis only itself appears in one scene.As indicated by how the final film lacks the several leaked visuals Snyder revealed early into post-production, there originally would have been more scenes in Atlantis.
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And even more importantly, Cyborg's role would have been greatly expanded. The original trailer showcases Cyborg, before his transformation, walking around and playing football. We would have seen him Victor Stone as a human, perhaps to contrast his later transformation later on in the film. Silas Stone would also have played a larger role in the original film, as it has since been confirmed that he, not Lois Lane, would have served as the narrator for the film's epilogue. Cyborg's father would have died halfway through, and the ending scene would be a video that he recorded for his son. The dialogue is apparently the same.
This indicates that Cyborg, who starts both cuts as a loner isolated from society, ends his story with a message of hope for the future. This, in essence, means that Cyborg's entire arc was cut from the film.
The film would've also featured more DC heroes, with a Green Lantern appearing at the end, as well as the reveal that General Swanwick was the Martian Manhunter the entire time.
However, in all cases, we still don't entirely know how all of this would tie into the main plot, if at all, and that aspect of the film hasn't really been spoiled beyond the acknowledgement of their existence.
As indicated by the CGI lip throughout the film, most scenes involving Superman probably would've been different, and there remains even more evidence that the film would've been drastically different originally.
In the theatrical version, the Flash and Cyborg go to dig up Superman's grave. However, as indicated by this behind-the-scenes photo, Snyder shot a scene at the cemetery with Wonder Woman and Aquaman present as well. Superman's resurrection and fight in the park is also subject to reshoots, though it remains uncertain how much of these scenes came from Snyder and how much came from Whedon.
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What is undeniable, however, is that the park fight scene did exist in the Snyder Cut, in some capacity. Early trailers show Cyborg taking a tank head-on in the same park in Metropolis where they fight Superman. What remains uncertain is whether or not this fight would've been remotely similar to how it plays out in the movie.
Superman also, at one point, would return to his Kryptonian ship. We can see from a production still from the Snyder Cut that, at one point, Clark was going to consider donning his iconic black suit before choosing his more colorful one. This hints that we would have seen the black suit as an Easter Egg, if nothing else.
Furthermore, almost all of Lois's scenes in the Snyder Cut are with Superman, who, again, has his CGI mustache. So we can assume that Lois Lane's scenes are largely from reshoots. However, we don't know what her role in Snyder's cut of the film would have been.
Undoubtedly, the most well-known change from the Snyder Cut to the theatrical one is the role that Darkseid played in the film. Darkseid exists as a presence throughout the Snyder Cut, while in the theatrical cut Darkseid is barely alluded to. In the Snyder Cut, while Steppenwolf would have remained the core antagonist, Darkseid would have loomed over him as a presence, much like how Thanos looms over both Loki and Ronan in both The Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy,
The most explicit appearance of Darkseid would've been during the flashback to Steppenwolf's first invasion, where we would've seen Uxas, Darkseid before becoming Darkseid proper.But arguably the biggest change in the film is who would have defeated Steppenwolf. While in the film it's a tag-team brawl, in the Snyder Cut, we know that it would've been Wonder Woman who decapitates the villain with her sword.
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In addition, much of the material connecting Justice League to Batman v. Superman's Knightmare sequence was cut, which results in that dangling subplot meaning precious little. Presumably, we would have seen the Flash's time travel as well as how Lois is "the Key." However, the problem remains that, at this time, we still don't understand entirely how this might've played out, other than through the scrapped idea to kill Lois Lane in the Batcave early on in the film.
Ultimately, while many core elements of the Snyder Cut have been revealed, much still remains in the dark. The Snyder Cut represents a fascinating possibility of what could have been. For the moment, there's no way of knowing if we'll ever actually see what it contains, but if it is ever released, we have a fairly strong idea of what to expect from it.
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