“Zack Snyder’s Justice League” was born out of social media fandom last year, with July 19 marking the film’s official digital release date. But before redeeming Zack Snyder’s contributions to the DCEU and rallying to win the movie a fan-favorite “Oscar,” the #SnyderCut movement may have taken a nefarious path.
An investigative piece by Rolling Stone reveals that WarnerMedia commissioned two reports surrounding the #SnyderCut of “Justice League” indicating that “at least 13 percent of the accounts that took part in the conversation about the Snyder Cut were deemed fake, well above the three to five percent that cyber experts say they typically see on any trending topic.”
Per the report, WarnerMedia hired two social-media tracking companies, Q5id and Graphika, as part of a third-party investigation that ultimately found there was a lot of “negative activity created by both real and fake authors” behind hashtags #ReleaseTheSnyderCut and #RestoreTheSnyderVerse. The “Snyder Verse” hashtag had the higher level of inauthentic activity reported.
“As an artist, it was fulfilling to be able to finally see my vision realized after such a difficult time in my life and for it to be so well received,” Snyder told Rolling Stone in response to the social media findings. “I am grateful to both the fan community and Warner Bros. for allowing this to happen. To dwell on negativity and rumors serves no one.”
The report additionally claimed that Snyder’s original cut of the film led to Warner Bros. hiring Joss Whedon to oversee reshoots, rewrite the script, and recut the film following Snyder’s exit from the project after the death of his daughter.
The publication stated that Snyder’s first cut, shown to executives at Warner Bros. on February 27, 2017, was deemed a “disaster” and a “full-on failure” from the studio. A source told Rolling Stone that this was when Whedon was brought in as a writer and a consultant, giving notes on Snyder’s second cut submitted over a week later. The final version, shown on May 5 to Warner Bros. studio executives, was described by an unnamed source as “unwatchable” and “joyless.”