black superheroes by Tremain Prioleau March 29, 2021
Zack Snyder’s Justice League is a 4 hour cut of the 2017 film directed by Joss Whedon. Ahead is not only a review of Zack Snyder’s Justice League, but a recount of why is this film so important to learn from.
Years ago the DC film universe was largely being steered by Zack Snyder. The person who is responsible for Man of Steel and Batman vs. Superman. And so, Justice League was the next step in his vision for a cinematic DC story spanning over various movies.
Unfortunately, Snyder left the project because his daughter passed away from committing suicide. Thus, the studio then had to make a decision and brought on Joss Whedon. The guy who famously directed the first two Avengers films.
Whedon did way more than just edit the film that Snyder made. Instead, he opted to do intensive re-shoots. And this resulted in an entirely different film being released.
You see, Zack Snyder has a huge fanbase that loves his style of filmmaking. Still, they felt robbed of seeing his vision for the film. Considering that Snyder had already shot 4 hours of footage that was not used, this is understandable.
Thus the internet sensation that was #releasethesnydercut. The demand was so high for it, it allowed Snyder to get a new budget from Warner Brothers to actually finish his cut of the film.
It is wonderful that Snyder was able to release the film that he wanted. This cut is far superior to the studio version. Not to mention, it sets an example for creatives everywhere to not give up on your vision for anything.
This was certainly justice for Zack Snyder. But, talking about justice, let’s bring Ray Fisher into the picture.
Fisher played Victor Stone, aka Cyborg. His character infamously had very little to do in the 2017 cut. This was odd because if you know anything about DC comics, Cyborg is integral to the Justice League story. Plus, he was been featured in so many ways that he is not new to fans.
His role was cut significantly because of an executive decision from Warner Bro’s “to shorten time.” But, guess who was one of the major players for that decision? Yes, Whedon himself!
So, first of all, let’s start with: NEVER LET THE EXECUTIVES PARTICIPATE TOO MUCH IN THESE DECISIONS.
They will always do what they think is best economically, but what about the art form? Honestly, Whedon should have known better. Was he too lazy? Who knows.
Synder’s cut made it evident that a collective group in power attempted to silence Fisher — a Black man — both publicly and creatively. He had outspoken about how important it was for people to see his Black character. At this time, Black Panther’s premiere was only a few months away.
And, we know now how much that did for Black superheroes on screen.
Not to mention that now Hollywood understands the power and money that comes with Black heroes. So, there is absolutely no excuse to sideline them anymore.
The other most notable example being John Boyega’s role in the Star Wars trilogy. This trend in Hollywood is essentially a microcosm of the Black experience in America. Showing us what it feels like to be belittled, replaced, and told to stay in the lane we’ve created for you.
So, I applaud Fisher because he was one of the first and largest champions of releasing the Snyder Cut. And, Snyder deserves credit too for centering the story on a Black man in his film instead of Batman or Wonder Woman.
In essence of Cyborg’s character is given a second chance. His father saves his life with robotics. And, ironically, this too gives Ray Fisher that same chance.
Superhero roles or big-budget films in general often propel a person’s career to the next level. And if we were able to see Fisher’s full talent on display back in 2017, imagine the opportunities he’d have today.
I finished the Snyder cut wanting to see more of him. His performance was phenomenal. You can tell that this was more than just a role to him.
It’s one thing for a studio to release a bad film. It’s another thing when that is purposely done at the expense of a Black actor in the form of racism. If you haven’t seen the film or had no interest in it before, please watch it, because at its heart it is a character-driven film centered around Cyborg.
Fisher’s work and the message he wanted to get across about the human experience deserve to be seen the way it was intended. Not to mention that Fisher should be commended, not only for standing up for himself but for standing up for all of us despite the adversity he faced.
To me, that is the true mark of a hero. Allowing him to transcend anything he did as Cyborg.
Thank you for watching my Zack Snyder’s Justice League review.