Zack Snyder along with his lovely wife, Deborah Snyder, have been producing their own movies under the Cruel and Unusual Films banner since 2004. From the interviews I’ve seen on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, we haven’t really heard very much from Deborah. She’s likely been busy working on post-production on the movie or Zack is simply better at marketing as he is the director and people recognize him more.
Regardless, the husband and wife producing team sat down for an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. In it, they discussed a few things, but nothing particularly new, since this is one of the several of interviews given on the subject of Batman v Superman and the overall DC Extended Universe.
Deborah and Zack reiterated that WB’s overall approach to these movies will be focused more on the filmmaker than the universe. Charles Roven once called it a sandbox that filmmakers are invited to play in, as long they stay within the confines of the sandbox.
“Zack and Geoff Johns have outlined a timeline of where everybody is based off of, where our characters go in Justice League. So there’s a framework. But it’s filmmaker-driven, in that we want to hire directors who still have a point of view and that have latitude because we don’t want all the movies to feel the same. David Ayer has a certain tone and feel to what he brought to Suicide Squad, as does Patty [Jenkins] to Wonder Woman. They have freedom to tell their story in the way that it needs to be told.”
Zack followed up with:
“Once you say Batman and Superman exist in the same universe, you’re also saying that Wonder Woman can exist in that world and Flash and Cyborg and Aquaman. Our philosophy, though, is it’s filmmaker-driven. A lot of it comes from the idea of “do unto others.” How would I feel if I was told, “Listen, this is your movie, but shoot it like we say”? It’s not fun and cool, and I don’t think you get the best work from everybody. To understand that, there is a bigger storyline, and let’s all support that and not blow up the entire universe because you have an idea that you think is awesome but doesn’t make sense with the bigger thing.”
THR asked about whether there will be universal tone to the movies, but Zack explained that the movies will inherently carry different tones due the subject matter. He cites that with Ezra Miller playing the Flash, “it’s like millennial Flash. It’s going to be a little lighter than making a World War I epic with this feminist icon like Wonder Woman.”
Deborah quickly followed up saying that if the movies do have a universal tone, “then it loses a point of view and starts to feel like it’s made by a committee.”
But really, the most interesting tidbit came when they started discussing the R-rated version of the movie that will appear on the DVD/Blu-ray release of Batman v Superman. In response to WB’s decision to announce the R-rated version of the movie, fans have criticized them for attempting to ride the success of Deadpool.
“The why of that is [the DVD version] is a half-hour longer, and some of that additional material is some of the stuff we took out for the rating. I was like, ‘Cool, I can put it back in for the director’s cut.’ There was nothing by design. This was the material I just put back in, and then when [the MPAA] looked at it again, they were like, ‘Oh, now the movie’s rated R.’ And, by the way, it’s not a hard R. There’s no nudity. There’s a little bit of violence. It just tips the scale.”
With Batman v Superman‘s running time being 2 hours and 31 minutes, that would bring the R-rated version of the movie up to 3 hours. To be honest, I was fully expecting that that cut of the movie to be much longer based on what Zack said was cut from the movie. I guess it will mostly be a lot more supplemental material, with the real meat of it in the theatrical cut. With this, we also know that the R-rating is based not on the level of brutality of the violence, but rather just quantity. We all know the MPAA’s ratings are slightly arbitrary anyhow.
The rest of the interview is also very interesting. You should check it out here.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice hits theatres March 25th.