For some, the phrase “Release the Snyder Cut” has been a rallying cry for artistic integrity. They use the phrase to push back against mega-corporation Warner Brothers, demanding that director Zack Snyder be given the opportunity to complete his vision for DC Comics heroes the Justice League, which he began with Man of Steel in 2012. For them, the phrase rejects the 2017 theatrical release of Justice Leaguewhich was completed by Joss Whedon after a family tragedy pulled Snyder away from the production.
But for others, “Release the Snyder Cut” is a threat, a demand to silence all criticisms of Snyder’s work and a punishment for perceived threats to the director’s films. Victims of online harassment campaigns have ranged from Geoff Johns and Jon Berg, who produced the theatrical cut of Justice Leagueto director Adam Wingard, whose movie Godzilla vs. kong appeared on HBO Max two weeks after Zack Snyder’s Justice League and thus drew away attention, to countless critics and journalists who gave Snyder movies bad reviews.
As vicious as these attacks could sometimes be, Snyder himself managed to stand above the fray, portraying himself as a largely decent guy, despite his rabid fans. But a report from rolling stone alleges that Snyder was far more complicit in harassment campaigns than previously believed. Drawing from a number of sources, most of whom go unnamed, and internal investigations by Warner Brothers, the report finds the “Release the Snyder Cut” movement to be the result of Twitter bots, marketing firms, and Snyder himself, as much as it was an organic outcry from a large group of fans.
The report traces Snyder’s involvement with Twitter campaigns back to 2016, when the director allegedly hired an online marketing firm to counter the poor reception of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. A month after the Whedon-directed Justice League Released to poor reviews and low box office receipts, the website forsnydercut.com launched, and became a hub for the first and most influential voices in the Snyder Cut movement. rolling stone discovered that the site was founded by MyAdGency, a marketing firm similar to the one Snyder allegedly hired in 2016.