The internet has spoken! Even critics who hated Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice have said that the 3 hour Ultimate Edition is a much better movie. So why wasn’t this version released in theaters? The R-rating could have easily been avoided with a few minor tweaks. But the real issue Warner Bros. had with the Ultimate Edition was how long it was.
In the video interview with Collider above, which was done back in March right before the release of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Zack Snyder explained that the Ultimate Edition was the version of the movie he was working with right until the very end. Unfortunately Warner Bros. felt it was too long, and had him cut out over 30 minutes.
“It was in there until very recently, so all of it’s finished. It was really just a function of time, to be honest. Because the movie’s long now, long-ish—I don’t think it’s long, but when you get over two and a half hours the studio starts getting nervous. I’m not James Cameron who’s like ‘No it’s three hours, suck it!’, which is cool by the way. I just wanted to try and get it to a length that is work-able.”
While I understand the business decision behind not wanting to release a 3 hour movie (it can be played less times throughout the day, and audiences are generally turned off by longer movies), it’s disappointing to see all the flack that Snyder received over a version of the movie that wasn’t truly his. That’s the norm in Hollywood though. Unless you’re as Snyder said, a James Cameron, you have to let the studio have their say. It’s their money, after all!
But from a fan perspective, it would have been interesting to see how the Ultimate Edition would have been reviewed. From the feedback I’ve seen online, it would have gotten much better scores. Perhaps the biggest complaint would have been “it’s too long”, rather than the other gripes that critics had.
I just thought this was a very interesting and honest interview with Zack Snyder to look back on, given the positive reaction the Ultimate Edition is getting today. What do you think? Do you understand why Warner Bros. made Snyder cut down his movie? Do you wish they gave him more freedom? Sound off in the comments below!