'Justice League' Roles Are Small in 'Batman v Superman' Says Snyder

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Yesterday, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice director Zack Snyder spoke about why he prefers the DC Universe to the Marvel Cinematic Universe during an appearance on the Hall of Justice podcast. The filmmaker also had plenty more to say during his appearance, offering new details about both Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League Part 1 and Justice League Part 2, which he starts filming this spring. First, the director essentially confirmed rumors that the rest of the Justice League, Aquaman (Jason Momoa), The Flash (Ezra Miller) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher) will be featured in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, although he admitted that they have small roles.

“I really feel like this movie… I mean as far as the other Justice League characters go, it’s very small roles. It’s a whisper that they exist. Except for Wonder Woman, we see her pretty well. But the movie is about Batman and Superman. And we really do take time with them, and we really do drill down on the ‘why’ of them, and what they stand for, and their beliefs, and them as characters. That’s pretty much the ‘why’ of the movie. But again, it does begin the conversation that these guys are out there.”

There have been persistent rumors that the end of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will unite Aquaman, The Flash and Cyborg with Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman, although that was never confirmed. While the director didn’t explicitly state where the other Justice League members will show up, it seems we’ll get to meet all of them in this movie. The filmmaker was also asked about how he responded to the fans who were critical of his 2013 adventure Man of Steel, dismissing claims that he “changed” Henry Cavill‘s title character, while promising “true versions” of the other DC heroes.

“I gotta say I was pretty ready for it, because I knew that we were really updating a character, a beloved character. I don’t think changing him – you know, people are always like “You changed Superman.” I’m like “if you’re a comic book fan, you know I didn’t change Superman. If you know the true canon, you know that I didn’t change Superman. If you’re a fan of the old movies, yeah, I changed him a bit. That’s the difference. I’m a bit of a comic book fan and I always default to the true canon, not the sort of cinematic canon, in my opinion, where they play slightly fast and loose with the rules. And so I feel like I tried to create a Superman that would set a tone for the world. And again, Christopher Nolan as producer on the film, and who really created the story and who is a close friend, we worked closely together, to try and make a movie that felt consistent with the DC Universe as it was created. And it was something that I wanted to do anyway, so it really made sense. My point is that we DON’T take liberties. My point is if you know anything about the actual characters, you’ll see that they’re very much… what we’ve done is create a universe where those characters can really be the mythological characters as they’re designed in the comic books. So if you were a fan of them in the comic books, you’ll get a great opportunity to see what they look like, and how they move, and are real.”

Long before Ben Affleck was ultimately cast as Batman in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, there were rumors that The Dark Knight trilogy star Christian Bale may come back for this movie, but obviously that never happened. This version of Batman is said to be more “weary” after fighting crime in Gotham for several years. Here’s what the director had to say about why he created a different version of Batman for this movie.

“I think it was weird but I think it also made sense in a lot of ways, because I feel like what Chris [Nolan] did was so complete… it seemed odd to us to try to shoehorn Superman into that world. That seemed more disrespectful to me than anything. So Chris and I talked about it and once we decided we were going to have Batman in the movie, we knew that it was going to have to be a reinvention of that world to make the world make sense with Superman in it. So it just made sense that we would have a new Batman.”

Before directing Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Man of Steel, the filmmaker’s first foray into the superhero world was the 2009 film Watchmen. Considered by many to be an “unadaptable” graphic novel before the movie came out, fans were quite divided about the adaptation, but the director revealed how working on that movie helped prepare him to take on this massive universe. Here’s what the filmmaker had to say below.

Watchmen, in a weird way, is Justice League anyway. It’s sort of coming to Justice League and understanding what it would be in the Watchmen universe… its kind of retirement, after it’s been destroyed. Sort of re-examining and putting together what had happened. The cool thing about is if you’ve really pored over Watchmen the way I clearly have, it’s kind of like this education that you can’t get any other way, as far as the ‘why’ of superheroes, and the ‘why’ of… a league of superheroes. It’s a primer in the most basic sense… of a Justice League type group. I think that knowledge, and sort of dealing with those personalities has really prepared me to really go forward into this world with a keen awareness not only to the ‘why’ of a group like that, but also to the ‘why’ of their existence in pop culture.”

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is just the beginning, serving as a launching pad for Warner Bros. new DC Comics slate of movies. Just a few months after Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice hits theaters, Suicide Squad arrives on August 5, followed by Wonder Woman (June 23, 2017), Justice League Part 1 (November 17, 2017), The Flash (March 23, 2018), Aquaman (July 27, 2018), Shazam! (April 5, 2019), Justice League Part 2 (June 14, 2019), Cyborg (April 3, 2020) and Green Lantern Corps. (June 19, 2020). What do you think about these new details? Are you excited to see these Justice League characters in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice when it hits theaters on March 25? Chime in with your thoughts, and stay tuned for more on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice as we get closer and closer to the release date.

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice comes to theaters March 25th, 2016.

Justice League Part 1 comes to theaters November 17th, 2017.

Justice League Part 2 comes to theaters June 14th, 2019.

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