Justice League re-cut headed for HBO
After three years of intense campaigning by die-hard DC Comics fans, Warner Bros has announced it will release Zack Snyder's director's cut of Justice League.
Fans of the superhero franchise were devastated when Snyder stepped down from the film just months before its release in 2017 following a family tragedy.
The 54-year-old filmmaker, who directed Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, had hoped to "bury himself" in his work after his 20-year-old daughter took her own life.
But the demands of the job were too "intense" and "all consuming", so he decided to step back from the movie to be with his family and kids.
Warner Bros then brought in Joss Whedon, who directed Marvel's The Avengers, to finish the project. But the big-budget film flopped at the box office and fans complained it was too light-hearted.
It was then that calls for a "Snyder cut" began, sparking a long-running, sometimes nasty social media campaign using the hashtag #ReleaseTheSnyderCut that was at times shared by Batman actor Ben Affleck and Wonder Woman's Gal Gadot.
SNYDER CUT TO BE RELEASED ON HBO MAX
Snyder announced the news on Wednesday, surprising fans during a live online commentary of his film Man of Steel with Henry Cavill.
In a statement, Warner Bros confirmed the "ultimate version" of the film would premiere on HBO's new streaming service HBO Max in 2021.
"Thanks to the efforts of a lot people, we're excited to bring fans this highly anticipated version of Justice League," said Toby Emmerich, chairman of the Warner Bros Pictures Group.
"This feels like the right time to share Zack's story, and HBO Max is the perfect platform for it. We're glad the creative planets aligned, allowing us to #ReleaseTheSnyderCut."
Snyder thanked fans for their unwavering determination and Warner Bros for allowing him to share his "true vision".
"I want to thank HBO Max and Warner Brothers for this brave gesture of supporting artists and allowing their true visions to be realised. Also a special thank you to all of those involved in the SnyderCut movement for making this a reality," he said in a statement.
'BE NICE TO EACH OTHER'
Justice League brings together DC's biggest superheroes: Batman (played by Affleck), Wonder Woman (Gadot), Aquaman (Jason Momoa), Cyborg (Ray Fisher) and The Flash (Ezra Miller).
It is not yet known whether the new cut will be released as a movie or limited series, but Snyder told The Hollywood Reporter it would be "an entirely new thing".
Ray Fisher amped up fans on social media, writing: "For those who fought. For those who believed. Thank you."
Henry Cavill also wrote on Instagram: "Ladies and Gents, it finally happened. The Snyder cut will be out next year!"
"Now, I know there have been two camps over the whole Snyder Cut thing and whether it will ever happen for a while. Just remember, we all get to have more Justice League now, it's a win-win.
"Be nice to each other," he added.
HBO Max will launch in the US on May 27.
While the service isn't launching in Australia, a deal with Foxtel will give Australians access to its content.