We're getting bonus scenes, but no Zack Snyder cut of Justice League on Blu-ray and DVD.

News Mike Cecchini

Jan 18, 2018

Justice League had a troubled road to the big screen and now it greatly underperformed at the box office. After years of sidelining much of their potentially lucrative superhero IP library (and accounting for a false start or two) when the concept of a “shared cinematic universe” was still a novelty to be celebrated, Warner Bros. realized they needed to take a shortcut from 2013’s Man of Steel to assembling a big screen team of DC superheroes. This brought us 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which introduced both Batman and Wonder Woman to the DC Extended Universe, and planted the seeds for their teammates Flash, Cyborg, and Aquaman.

Justice League kicked off principal photography alongside the initial wave of critical backlash against Batman v Superman, and it was apparent from the first footage released just a few months later that they were aiming for a different tone from its predecessors. In any case, the fact that neither Man of Steel and Batman v Superman achieved the Avengers-style box office numbers that Warner Bros. was hoping for surely colored their approach, so this was bound to be a rocky production.

A personal tragedy caused Zack Snyder to step down in May, just as Justice League was about to undergo a round of reshoots, and Avengers director Joss Whedon stepped in. It’s not clear how much of the finished project was handled by either director (although you can certainly guess where Whedon added his touches, and the issue with Henry Cavill’s CGI upper lip helps). Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara reportedly mandated a relatively lean 120 minute running time (by comparison, Snyder’s Man of Steel was 143 minutes, while Batman v Superman clocked in at 151), which likely contributed to cuts to the final product. Speaking as someone who enjoyed Justice League and who finds the increasing trend of bloated blockbuster run times tiresome, even I felt that it could have done with an additional 15 minutes to explain its logic. 

The question has been raised by fans about whether we’ll ever see something closer to Zack Snyder’s original vision for the film, or if we’ll get some kind of extended version for a home media release. There’s already precedent for this with DCEU films, as Batman v Superman‘s already long theatrical cut was followed by an “Ultimate Edition” home release, which added an additional 32 minutes of footage, while Suicide Squad had 13 minutes (mostly character-focused) added back in for its “Extended Cut.” There are plenty of moments in the Justice League trailers that weren’t in the final theatrical cut, which is standard for films of this scale.

The Justice League Blu-ray and DVD will feature at least one scene not scene in theaters, so that’s good news. But bad news for fans who have been petitioning for a mythhical “Zack Snyder Cut” of the movie is that there isn’t one on this set.

Here’s the full list of special features, courtesy of Warner Bros:

Justice League 4k Ultra HD Blu-ray and Blu-ray 3D Combo Pack contains the following special features:

  • ·         Road to Justice
    •    Journey alongside DC comic creators as they explore over fifty years of the Justice League, from comic books to animated adventures to their cinematic debut.
  • ·         Heart of Justice
    • o   Discover the heart, soul and mind of the Justice League, as the cast and filmmakers share their admiration for DC’s iconic Trinity: Superman, Wonder Woman and Batman.
  • ·         Technology of the Justice League
    • o   From Batman’s arsenal to Cyborg’s alien tech, interface with the Justice League database to learn their most advanced secrets.
  • ·         Justice League: The New Heroes
    • o   Join Ray Fisher on a personal tour to meet the newest members of the Justice League: Aquaman, the Flash and Cyborg.
  • ·         The Return of Superman
    • o   Bonus scenes not seen in theaters
  • ·         Steppenwolf the Conqueror
    • o   Join actor Ciarán Hinds and the filmmakers as they reveal the story behind mankind’s ancient enemy and the Justice League’s greatest challenge.
  • ·         Scene Studies: Revisiting the Amazons
    • o   Take a closer look at the filmmaking process behind Justice League’s most visually exciting and action-packed sequences
  • ·         Scene Studies: Wonder Woman’s Rescue
    • o   Take a closer look at the filmmaking process behind Justice League’s most visually exciting and action-packed sequences
  • ·         Scene Studies: Heroes Park
    • o   Take a closer look at the filmmaking process behind Justice League’s most visually exciting and action-packed sequences
  • ·         Scene Studies: The Tunnel Battle
    • o   Take a closer look at the filmmaking process behind Justice League’s most visually exciting and action-packed sequences
  • ·         Suit Up: The Look of the League
    • o   Costume Designer Michael Wilkinson explores the innovation and artistry that goes into creating the costumes of DC’s iconic heroes.

Justice League” Standard Definition DVD contains the following special features:

  • ·         Road to Justice
  • ·         Heart of Justice
  • ·         Technology of the Justice League
  • ·         Justice League: The New Heroes
  • ·         Steppenwolf the Conqueror
  • ·         Scene Studies: Revisiting the Amazons
  • ·         Scene Studies: Wonder Woman’s Rescue
  • ·         Scene Studies: Heroes Park
  • ·         Scene Studies: The Tunnel Battle
  • ·         Suit Up: The Look of the League

Justice League arrives on digital and on demand services on February 13, and on Blu-ray and DVD on March 13. You can pre-order it here.

Talk superhero movies and more with Mike Cecchini on Twitter.