Joss Whedon replaces Zack Snyder on Justice League would probably be a headline that would thrill tons of fanboys. But this is an altogether crappy reason for the change.
Snyder informed The Hollywood Reporter that he’s stepping away from the film to rally around his family following his daughter’s suicide. Snyder has been the enthusiastic gatekeeper for the DC Cinematic Universe as the director for Man of Steel, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League.
As typical with big blockbusters, Snyder wanted to do some re-shoots. There’d been a lot of rumors that Justice League was undergoing massive re-shoots, but few knew the cause for the changes. Snyder’s 20-year-old daughter, Autumn, committed suicide in March.
‘In my mind, I thought it was a cathartic thing to go back to work, to just bury myself and see if that was the way through it,’ Snyder told THR on Monday. ‘The demands of this job are pretty intense. It is all-consuming. And in the last two months, I’ve come to the realization … I’ve decided to take a step back from the movie to be with my family, be with my kids, who really need me. They are all having a hard time. I’m having a hard time.’
With Warner Bros. not planning to delay the Nov. 17 release date for Justice League, Whedon will be very busy over the next few months. Whedon, the force behind Marvel’s The Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron, will now steer post production work and shoot/write additional scenes.
This is a major moment for Warner Bros. The Ultimate Edition cut of Batman v Superman was a huge improvement over the theatrical version. Snyder reportedly gave up final cut decisions in order to direct Justice League. I still contend had the Ultimate Edition arrived in theaters, people would look at the film in a more positive light.
Whedon is already fully in the Warner’s camp these days as he’s directing the upcoming Batgirl film.
THR reports Snyder is still going to play a role in Warner Bros.’ DC Cinematic Universe when he’s ready to return. Hopefully he takes all the time he needs and doesn’t feel pressured to return earlier than necessary.