Zack Snyder defends Watchmen and talks Batman vs. Superman leaks
Last week, producer Joel Silver talked at length about his and director Terry Gilliam's version of Alan Moore's WATCHMEN that never happened, saying that director Zack Snyder was a "slave to the material" and that his and Gilliam's version would have been a "MUCH much better movie." While promoting this week's 300: RISE OF AN EMPIRE, both Zack Snyder and wife/producer Deborah Snyder have fired back, giving their thoughts on the "damned if you do, damned if you don't" project. The Snyder's also goes into the fanboy rage at the time and discusses the issue with Internet leaks, revealing why they're keeping a lid on BATMAN VS SUPERMAN details until they feel it's time to release them.
Zack Snyder on Joel Silver's criticism of Snyder's approach and the different ending:
"Yeah, the fans would have stormed the castle on that one. So, honestly, I made "Watchmen" for myself. It's probably my favorite movie that I've made. And I love the graphic novel and I really love everything about the movie. I love the style. I just love the movie and it was a labor of love. And I made it because I knew that the studio would have made the movie anyway and they would have made it crazy. So, finally I made it to save it from the Terry Gilliams of this world."
Deborah Snyder elaborated, saying:
But it's interesting because, you're right, it's damned if you do, damned if you don't. You have people who are mad that the ending was changed and you have other people saying, "Oh, it was a slave to the graphic novel." You can't please everybody."
Zack Snyder followed Deborah's comments discussing the problem with the genre and how it's evolved since:
"And that's the problem with genre. That's the problem with comic book movies and genre. And I believe that we've evolved -- I believe that the audiences have evolved. I feel like "Watchmen" came out at sort of the height of the snarky Internet fanboy -- like, when he had his biggest strength. And I think if that movie came out now -- and this is just my opinion -- because now that we've had "Avengers" and comic book culture is well established, I think people would realize that the movie is a satire. You know, the whole movie is a satire. It's a genre-busting movie. The graphic novel was written to analyze the graphic novel -- and comic books and the Cold War and politics and the place that comic books play in the mythology of pop culture. I guess that's what I'm getting at with the end of "Watchmen" -- in the end, the most important thing with the end was that it tells the story of the graphic novel. The morality tale of the graphic novel is still told exactly as it was told in the graphic novel -- I used slightly different devices. The Gilliam version, if you look at it, it has nothing to do with the idea that is the end of the graphic novel. And that's the thing that I would go, "Well, then don't do it." It doesn't make any sense."
Zack Snyder on the difference of style between 300 and WATCHMEN to MAN OF STEEL:
"From the beginning, I had a philosophical approach to what I would do with Superman. And I always sum it up by saying that the most realistic movie I've made is a movie about Superman --because that's what I felt like the movie needed."
On whether he ever thought about making MAN OF STEEL with a different visual style:
"No. I mean, I had a knee-jerk reaction to that script that was "this movie needs to feel like it's stone-cold real." And that was, to me, ironic and I'm always looking for some ironic element within the storytelling -- like some bit of meta. For me to get excited about it, it needs to infiltrate the movie. And for me, that was that a Superman movie would be real."
Deborah Snyder on leaks and how they're dealing with them now:
"Things get leaked so often these days, it's a shame because even casting announcements, or whatever, you're in the middle of a process and sometimes they're so off base -- and then it gets picked up by multiple places and it's all over the place.
Or some of it, you're just having conversations, but that doesn't mean they are a contender, but you're just exploring and it gets made public. It's kind of a shame that you can't go through the process in a pure way and then be able to announce it in a way that's exciting. With the [Comic-Con] announcement, there was rumblings and we were like, "Aw." Because we wanted to bring it to the fans. We wanted to bring them something special. We went to Comic-Con for "Watchmen" and we were bringing the cast to announce it and it got leaked a couple of days before. We wanted to give that to them and we got cheated out of it."
Zack Snyder on how audiences become a part of the leaks:
"I think it does another thing. The leak becomes the audience involvement. They are now part of it, the process. Do you know what I mean? And you have to take that as the world we live in, as opposed to "Oh, that's too bad."
Snyder went on to say that the three big casting announcements of Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, and Jesse Eisenberg were a product of their own doing (i.e. not leaked) which makes it more "fun" for them since no one saw them coming. Interesting stuff. The Snyder's certainly have a lot on their shoulders with BATMAN VS SUPERMAN as it has quickly become the most discussed upcoming film, with much of it stemming from fan outrage rather than excitement. As for WATCHMEN, I honestly don't see how they could improve upon the version Snyder gave us and was fine without seeing the giant octopus at the end. It was such a minor change in the grand scheme of things. But, that's just me. As for BATMAN VS SUPERMAN, I remain optimistic and welcoming to see what they put together. It's obvious that Snyder is fully invested in the project and his passion for making something great is there. Whether or not he pulls it off won't be known until 2016.
BATMAN VS SUPERMAN opens on May 6, 2016