It was officially announced earlier this week that Zack Snyder would be stepping down from Justice League due to a death in the family, and that Batgirl director Joss Whedon will be taking his place. The news sent shockwaves through the entertainment community and an outpouring of support went towards Snyder and his family. Snyder made the announcement to keep rumors from popping up about the real reason that the he left the project at such a pivotal point and also to share his support for Whedon. It was reported that Whedon had already spent some time on the upcoming project, but nobody knew how much time Whedon had previously invested.
The decision to bring Whedon on was simple. It had already been previously reported that Whedon was involved in the writing and additional reshoots anyway. But now we have official word from DCEU producer Charles Roven. Roven spoke to Variety about the subject and had this to say.
"We're excited about the film, of course, but we were saddened by the events that caused Zack Snyder and Deborah Snyder to have to leave and turn the reins over to Joss Whedon. He was already working with us on some of the scenes for that additional photography that we're going to be doing shortly. It was fortunate that Zack convinced him, and he agreed to step in and finish the movie, to help Zack finish his vision. We're excited about that."
Whedon will takeover the additional minor reshoots in addition to what he had already worked on writing with Snyder. It really seems like the perfect solution.
One word that keeps popping up since Snyder's announcement is 'vision'. Both Warner Bros. and Whedon are intent to stay true to Snyder's vision and not make any drastic changes. So fans hoping for a bit more of Whedon's influence aren't going to get it with Justice League. They'll have to wait for Whedon's upcoming Batgirl movie to see how he handles the DC universe. Maybe some of the groundwork for Batgirl was set with Snyder and Whedon working together? We won't know the official answer to that for a while, but it seems likely.
Snyder had originally signed on to direct both Justice League movies back to back, but those plans appear to have changed since late last year when it was announced that Snyder would start The Last Photograph after Justice League. The Last Photograph appears to be stalled at the moment while it is unknown if Snyder will return to Justice League 2, but it does seem likely that he will return to both projects after his much needed break. It has been reported that the often-rumored standalone Batman movie will be the next priority for Warner Bros. and DCEU.
It's refreshing to hear that Whedon's take over seems to have been organic and not forced in any way. Since he was already pretty close to Snyder and the project it seems that he is the man for the job to see Snyder's vision through and get the movie turned in on time. Justice League will not see a delay and will hit theaters on November 17th, 2017.