A bad superhero sequel is nothing special – these days the box office is full of them.
But the is something special about Justice League. 2017’s DC Comics team-up flick was a misfire of rare proportions, a film that smelled so bad that Warner Bros. ultimately ordered a drastic and expensive re-release.
There are some factors behind the original Justice Leaguedisastrous reception.
For one, original director Zack Snyder resigned from the project midway through production due to a family tragedy; old buffy the vampire slayer Showrunner Joss Whedon took the reins. Script changes, budget issues, and delays also followed.
Whedon’s time on the project came under scrutiny in the following years, as the filmmaker faced a flurry of allegations of toxic misconduct from former collaborators.
Gal Gadot, Ray Fisher and Jason Momoa were among the Justice League cast members to speak out against Whedon.
When the extended black-and-white reissue of Zack Snyder’s film was released last year — complete with numerous reshoots — fans rejoiced. Finally they could put the memory of the original Justice League disaster in bed.
For those who were actually there, however, the memory can be hard to erase. Here’s what the cast of Justice League said in their own movie review…
Affleck played Bruce Wayne/Batman in the film; from the sounds, he wasn’t having much fun doing it. Addressing the Los Angeles Time recently the missing girl star said: “It was really Justice League that was the nadir for me. It was a bad experience because of a confluence of things: my own life, my divorce, being too far gone, competing agendas, then Zack’s personal tragedy and the reshoot. It was just the worst experience. It was horrible.
“That was everything I didn’t like about it. It became the moment when I said, ‘I don’t do that anymore.’
The comedian, who played Wayne’s butler Alfred, was asked about his response to the ‘Snyder Cut’ earlier this month. He said Variety that he hadn’t seen it yet. “I’ll have to look it up and see if I have it somewhere online or on a DVD. I remember talking to Zack [Snyder] before doing so and being very interested to see what he found,” Irons said.
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However, he later added that it “couldn’t have been worse” than the original theatrical release. After learning that some viewers thought the film was “awful”, Irons replied, “Well, me too.”
Cavill played Superman in the film, a role he previously played in Steel man and batman versus superman. Although Cavill wasn’t particularly candid about his thoughts on Justice League, he admitted in an interview with men’s health last year that the film “didn’t turn out the way I had hoped”.
Gadot did not criticize the film itself, but made damning claims about Whedon’s behavior on set. The Wonder Woman actor claimed to Israeli outlet N12 that the filmmaker “sort of threatened my career and said if I did anything it would make my career miserable.” She later clarified in a statement, “I’ve had my issues with [Whedon] and Warner Bros handled it in a timely manner.
In a new interview, Whedon called the incident a “misunderstanding”, saying “English is not [Gadot’s] first language.” Gadot closed Whedon’s suggestion in her response to the outlet.
Fisher was the first prominent voice to denounce Whedon since the Justice League to throw. In July 2020, he accused the director of “rude” and “unprofessional” behavior on set.
During a 2017 Comic-Con panel, Fisher said, “Joss [Whedon] is a great guy and Zack [Snyder] picked a great person to come clean and finish for him. He later tweeted that he wanted to take “that whole statement back.”
You can read a full timeline of the allegations against Whedon here.