Nick Picks | Should Warner Bros. Kick Zack Snyder off Justice League?

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It feels like everybody on the Internet has taken a shot at director Zack Snyder and Flickreel is no exception. After the critical disappointment of Batman v Superman, we talked about what the DC Extended Universe could learn from the Arrowverse and Felicity Smoak. We even attempted to understand the cinema of Zack Snyder, noting that’s he’s at least “a hugely impressive visual artist.” At the end of the day, however, we always come to the same conclusion: Snyder wasn’t the right guy to jumpstart this cinematic universe.

Only the most diehard fans are defending the DCEU while critics and mainstream audiences have been generally disappointed. Although Man of Steel and Batman v Superman weren’t box office bombs, both ultimately fell short of expectations. It’s easy to point the finger at Snyder, but in all fairness, we shouldn’t blame him for everything. Warner Bros. clearly doesn’t know how to manage this franchise and screenwriter David S. Goyer is nothing without Christopher Nolan. Snyder’s fingerprints are still all over these two movies, though, which were too moody, too unfocused, too long, and too pretentious.

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Just wait until the 10-hour NC-17 director’s cut comes out!

Zack Snyder has screwed up twice now and we have no reason to believe that his Justice League movies will be any better. On one hand, many artists have turned their careers around after a long string of failures. Just look at Ben Affleck, who salvaged a good portion of Batman v Superman with his portrayal of the Caped Crusader. On the other hand, sometimes artists never grow and dig themselves deeper into embarrassment. Just look at the Wachowskis and M. Night Shyamalan. Since Snyder has let us down time and time again, should Warner Bros. just kick him off Justice League?

It wouldn’t be the first time something like this has happened. Director Seth Grahame-Smith has left The Flash movie and there are rumors that James Wan may leave Aquaman too. Zack Snyder is reportedly butting heads with Warner Bros. over his vision for Justice League Part One. Even if WB were to give Snyder the boot, that doesn’t mean they’ll be able to save Justice League.

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Will Justice League be dead on arrival? Yeah, probably…

The film already began shooting in London last April. Usually when a director is removed from a major blockbuster at this stage, it’s a recipe for disaster. Granted, people thought Ant-Man would flop after Peyton Reed replaced Edgar Wright, but it actually turned out to be a really fun flick. Given how much time and money WB has already invested in Snyder, though, it’s probably too late to drop him.

It’s a shame Snyder got so much wrong in Man of Steel and Batman v Superman because he actually got a lot right. Both films were engaging in terms of visuals and action. The same could be said about his 2006 adaptation of 300, which worked as pure balls to the walls eye candy. When it comes to characters and storytelling, however, the guy simply doesn’t know what he’s doing. Snyder keeps trying to convince us otherwise, but he needs to face the truth: he’ll never be a thinking man’s director. So maybe Snyder needs somebody else to do the thinking for him.

BEN AFFLECK (Bruce Wayne/Batman) in film BATMAN vs SUPERMAN: Dawn Of Justice : movie directed by Zack Snyder starring Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Amy Adams; Gal Gadot; Jesse Eisenberg; Jared Leto; Action; Adventure; american; Batman; Superman; Gothan City; Batman v Superman : L?Aube de la Justice; 2015 NOTE: this is a PR photo. SUNSETBOX does not claim any Copyright or License in the attached material. Fees charged by SUNSETBOX are for SUNSETBOX's services only, and do not, nor are they intended to, convey to the user any ownership of Copyright or License in the material. By publishing this material, the user expressly agrees to indemnify and to hold SUNSETBOX harmless from any claims, demands, or causes of action arising out of or connected in any way with user's publication of the material

Can Ben Affleck save the day? Let’s hope so…

In addition to directing his own standalone Batman film, Ben Affleck has also been hired as an executive producer for Justice League. If Snyder stays on as a director, Affleck may be able to point him in the right direction. Some filmmakers deserve to have full creative control. Others need assistance and restraints, such as George Lucas. In Snyder’s case, he desperately needs somebody to hold his hand. With Affleck’s guidance, maybe Snyder’s visual style could finally be utilized to tell an involving story. Much like his interpretation of Superman, Snyder seems like he wants to use his power for good, but instead just causes destruction. Unless Snyder can set his own ego aside and accept help, he’ll never be able to do Justice League justice.

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About Nick Spake

Nick Spake has been working as an entertainment writer for the past ten years, but he's been a lover of film ever since seeing the opening sequence of The Lion King. Movies are more than just escapism to Nick, they're a crucial part of our society that shape who we are. He now serves as the Features Editor at Flickreel and author of its regular column, 'Nick Flicks'.

4 comments on “Nick Picks | Should Warner Bros. Kick Zack Snyder off Justice League?

  1. NoSnyder

    dude….snyder has to go. Cant have affleck in control and snyder buzzing around right after BVS because it’ll be a shoulder brushing bromance. just get rid of him and let him go work on something else. Also….if you’re going to right an article that apparently looks like a consolidated effort from everyone else’s articles, at least be accurate. James Wan isn’t going anywhere and is still going forward with Aquaman. Did you not see his rebuttal picture on instagram after hearing the “rumors”?
    Its like every new information that comes out, as minut as it may be, some new article with the same information is just re written and then opinionated on. Let superofeed or screenrant write the articles or something. same information we’ve been fed the last month. aside from your inaccuracy of Wan

  2. Ambassador Joss

    Zack Snyder is a great visual director, but he can’t tell a good story to save his life. He should be directing a storyless spectacle like Transformers.
    The DC Cinematic Universe will only ever be about Batman until they can find a director who can give multiple characters the heart, depth, and character they each require within a well crafted story. Snyder is just not suited to tell the stories of DC’s most beloved characters.

  3. DannyM

    Please Snyder is a good director and BvS was the best and most ballsy superhero movie in a long time. Ant Man was a joke. It was nothing more than a cheap rip off of Iron Man and another generic popcorn superhero flick. Just because it was fun doesn’t excuse it from being mediocre. If that’s the case all Bay films are great. BvS had a lot of deep moments and to imply that it was just a dumb generic action film is wrong. It literally has three action scenes the Batmobile chase, Batman vs Superman, and Doomsday attack and they all had a purpose as well as consequence unlike another superhero film where they have massive battles in broad day light in public areas causing hundreds of dollars in property damage and killing hundreds of innocents without a care in the world. That’s it. His article is so whiny and cliche. Too long, joyless, and pretentious? Huh what about Dark Knight Rises? Everyone is being completely hypocritical giving some movies a pass while critizing BvS because Snyder’s name is on it. Synder is the perfect guy to do a superhero team movie after Watchmen which was a masterpiece. Is BvS flawed? Yes but it’s not a bad movie. With Affleck helping and Terrio having full control over the script Justice League will be awesome

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