What's the best way to start your Monday? With a cup of coffee, a comedy recap of last night's Thrones episode, and a fresh new Justice League rumor, of course! And this week's DCEU leak is a doozy. As if it weren't enough that Joss Whedon's now-infamous reshoots were reportedly ordered to lighten up the movie's tone, a new rumor would have us believe that the entire ending has been drastically changed, which will have a huge impact on the future of the DCEU. Finished your coffee? Ok, then let's get down to it.
From A Cliffhanger To A Closed Case
This rumor comes to us via /Film's Peter Sciretta, who claims to have sources inside the Justice League production. As editor-in-chief of one of the biggest entertainment publications, we can probably treat Sciretta's words with a slightly smaller bucket of salt that accompanies any Hollywood leak and rumor these days. Here's what he had to say on the /FilmDaily podcast yesterday:
"From what I've heard is happening, Joss Whedon has been brought in to make it lighter, as has been reported, but he's also redoing the ending of the movie."
Sciretta explains that the original plot for Justice League largely dealt with gathering up the Mother Boxes — Darkseid's incredibly advanced alien technology that was lost on Earth. Head of the Mother Box Easter Egg Hunt is Stepphenwolf, the leader of Darkseid's army. So basically, Justice League Part One was the same kind of set-up as The Avengers (and the rest of the MCU) was to Infinity War, putting all the pieces in play, assembling some powerful alien tech (Infinity Stones/Mother Boxes) and foreshadowing the arrival of a bigger, badder, bluer, bad guy. But now all that is set to change:
"The original ending of the movie from what I understand was, [Stepphenwolf] was kind of playing the Silver Surfer role, with Darkseid playing the Galactus role, and the ending of the movie was a cliffhanger and 'Justice League 2' was going to be 'Justice League vs Darkseid'. Ya know, Darkseid arrives at Earth. This kind of down, dirty ending, and from what I understand that has been completely removed. The ending ends the movie like a movie, it doesn't end on a huge cliffhanger now."
Allegedly, Justice League originally ended on a cliffhanger, with the team gearing up for their ultimate fight with Darkseid, who was to be the Big Bad of Part Two. But just like Infinity War went from being a two-part movie to being self-contained, it seems that Joss Whedon has wrapped Justice League up neatly — and Darkseid may not factor into the DCEU until much later.
Has This Changed The Course Of The DCEU?
Instead, some reshoots have fleshed out Stepphenwolf's character, making him an imposing enough figure to be his own villain, and not just foreshadow the arrival of his commander. At least one of these reshoots was a flashback scene with Robin Wright's Antiope, whom we already heard would be appearing in Justice League:
"They did a reshoot with Robin Wright from 'Wonder Woman', to set-up a flashback explaining who Steppenwolf is and Steppenwolf is now the big bad of this movie, whereas Darkseid was this looming threat that won't now come I don't think."
These changes are pretty drastic. If Sciretta's information is correct, it sounds like Justice League will be a self-contained plot, allowing whoever takes on Part Two to do whatever they like with it, and whether that means bringing in Darkseid or taking on another epic crossover event from #DC's history, remains to be seen.
It's difficult to know how to feel about this. Assuming all this is true, clearly Whedon really is making huge changes to what Zack Snyder originally intended for the film. It sounds like his alterations are an effort to make the film's conclusion a rousing victory, rather than a gloomy lead-in to a movie yet to come. But who knows, perhaps this will render Justice League just another predictable superhero flick in which the heroes win the day — and maybe a cliffhanger ending, something which hasn't yet been attempted in a superhero movie franchise, would have been refreshing and a way to pique interest.
However, with Thanos finally making his grand entrance into the MCU, the parallels between Infinity War and Justice League are already very apparent. It could be that Whedon hopes the #DCEU will step away from Darkseid, and by making the first Justice League a closed case, he's giving more creative freedom to whoever takes the helm of Part Two. But that's all conjecture, of course.
We'll probably never know what Justice League would have looked like without these reshoots, and we can only hope that whatever changes are being made, they're to the benefit of the film — because Zeus knows the DCEU could do with another win.
Tell us in the comments: Do you think the reshoots will hurt or help Justice League?
(Source: Peter Sciretta on /FilmDaily)