Let’s get one thing straight. You may have seen some recent articles with some grotesquely misleading headlines saying that The Invisible Man director Leigh Whannell “doesn’t like any director’s cut – including Snyder‘s original cut” or something along the lines of “Snyder Cut of ‘Justice League’ is a “Terrible Thing”(TheWrap). Talk about twisting someone’s words. Here is what Whannell actually said on the ReelBlend podcast…
“To me, I never wanna have another cut sitting somewhere that competes with the original cut… I guess what I’m saying is, whatever circumstances created that cut, whatever horrible circumstances are totally understandable. For me personally, I would always view it as a terrible thing that there was an unseen cut of the film. Over the years, you’ll see this thing where it’s like, ‘James Cameron rereleases the director’s cut of Aliens.’ And then he’ll introduce it. When you watch it, he comes on the screen and he says, ‘This is the way I always intended people to watch Aliens.’ And my first thought is, ‘That’s nuts!’ Don’t… have one definitive version of the movie. I hate this idea that we missed out on the version he wanted us to see.”
Let me reread that last part again. “I hate this idea that we missed out on the version he wanted us to see”.
Just to quickly recap the infamous production of the theatrical cut of Justice League, Zack Snyder left the film during postproduction due to a family tragedy. He was then replaced by Joss Whedon. Whedon was to complete production and oversee the reshoots, but Warner Brothers also wanted to “lighten the mood” so to speak. Enter Whedon’s approximately 80 pages of script that changed it all. The theatrical cut is an even 2 hours. The original cut (The Snyder Cut) is 214 minutes, or 3 hours and 34 minutes. Obviously, with an extra hour and a half cut out, Snyder’s vision was not fulfilled. What the audience got was something else entirely.
Back to Whannell who was also asked during the podcast how he felt about director’s cuts in general. They specifically mentioned Blade Runner and how the theatrical cut had voiceovers that Ridley Scott did not like, Whannell answered…
“And that’s the situation I’m saying would be a nightmare, would be someone forcibly changing a film that I had made to such a degree that I felt the version out there was not the true version. That is a living nightmare that I don’t want to live.”Whannell on the ReelBlend podcast
A nightmare many directors have lived through. Some more than once. Where the studios want directors to cut down their vision for many reasons only to reveal a more complete version on the cutting-room floor. Snyder himself has seen this recently with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Ultimate Edition and Watchmen: Director’s Cut. Scott’s Blade Runner: Final Cut as well as his Kingdom of Heaven: Director’s Cut. Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now: Redux and of course, Richard Donner’s Superman II: The Donner Cut. Just to name a few, there’s plenty more we could list, but lets save that for another time.
To reiterate, Leigh Whannell hasn’t said anything negative about about Snyder’s original cut. Not one thing. But that hasn’t stopped many in the media to take this as a chance to spin anti-Snyder headlines.
At the very core of what Whannell is saying, the final cut should be the “director’s cut”.
Leigh Whannell’s The Invisible Man releases today, February 28th. Starring Elisabeth Moss and Oliver Jackson-Cohen. Whannell may or may not have a director’s cut coming, but I’ll show him support this weekend regardless.
So here’s hoping that all directors get to put forward the movie they want. Not a watered down version, not a completely different version. The version that was meant to be seen. Wishful thinking? Absolutely. But you can’t stop us from hoping to see the intended versions of our favorite films. Because hope is like car keys….no it’s not. I take that back. #ReleaseTheSnyderCut