Back in March, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice opened huge in theaters with a whopping $166 million debut weekend, kicking off the studio's DC Extended Universe (DCEU) by setting the stage for the two-part Justice League adventure. The Monday after it opened, Warner Bros. surprised fans by releasing a deleted scene from the movie, featuring Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg), which many assumed would help set up the Justice League movie. Today we have new details about this scene, and how it reveals who the villain of Justice League really is. There will be SPOILERS if you haven't seen Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice yet, so read on at your own risk.
The deleted scene showed Lex Luthor inside the Kryptonian ship where he was trying to create Doomsday. We see a number of soldiers advance on Lex, who is using the Kryptonian technology to create some sort of creature, who is seen holding what appear to be Mother Boxes. This technology from Darkseid's Apokolips is also used to turn Victor Stone (Ray Fisher) into Cyborg. After the deleted scene debuted, many speculated that this creature is Steppenwolf, one of the New Gods. This report from Birth.Movies.Death reveals that the creature we saw is actually Steppenwolf, and that he will be the main villain in Justice League, not Darkseid.
Steppenwolf was created by Jack Kirby, debuting in the 1972 comic New Gods #7. In the comics, Steppenwolf is the uncle of Darkseid and his mentor, while serving as one of highest-ranking generals on the planet of Apokolips. He wields a massive energy axe and even rides a unique hoverbike in the comics, but it isn't known if his weapon or vehicle will actually be shown in the movie. This report speculates that Justice League will be at least partially based on the New 52 comics, where Steppenwolf invades Earth, but that hasn't been confirmed yet.
This report also reveals that, in the Justice League movie, Steppenwolf has a "contentious relationship" with Darkseid, which could serve as his motivation for invading Earth. When this happens, the Justice League reportedly cannot defeat him on their own, which leads them to turn to "a dead friend for help." While the report doesn't say it outright, they're referring to Henry Cavill's Superman, who died in the massive battle with Doomsday at the end of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. The final shot, where dirt was seen floating off of his coffin, hinted that the Man of Steel isn't quite dead yet, but we still don't know when Superman will come back to life in Justice League.
The report also reveals that Darkseid himself will have a presence in the movie, and will be seen at the end of Justice League Part 1, with the site speculating that Darkseid's full plan won't be revealed until Justice League Part 2. It is also revealed that the other solo DC movies will take place in "real-ish" time, with The Flash set after the events of Justice League Part 1. While we wait for confirmation on these details, take a look at the deleted scene that debuted back in March, and chime in with your thoughts below.