For those who are looking for an excuse to watch Zack Snyder’s Justice League, or for those who were merely waiting for the opportunity to watch it in black and white, the time is now. The Justice Is Gray edition of the DC Comics superhero team-up is now available to HBO Max Subscribers. This is, it’s worth mentioning, the version of the movie that Snyder considers to be his “ideal” version.
The announcement was made by the official social media accounts for Zack Snyder’s Justice League. The initial, full-color version of the movie was released on the streaming service a week ago. Now, it has officially been made available in black and white, offering DC fans a little something different. A message released on social media, along with a trailer for the Justice Is Grey edition, reads as follows.
“For years, the #SnyderCut existed in black and white and shown only to a select few. Zack Snyder’s Justice League: #JusticeIsGray, a black and white version of the film, is now streaming on HBO Max in 4K UHD, HDR10, Dolby Vision, Dolby Atmos on supported devices.”
Before Zack Snyder was given the resources by Warner Bros. to finish the movie, it existed only in black and white. Not to mention unfinished. But this was the version that sat for several years. The version that Snyder teased time and time again on social media as fans called on the studio to #ReleaseTheSnyderCut. The whole idea behind releasing this version of the movie in the first place was to allow Snyder to realize his vision. Given that Snyder has stated that this is his ideal version of the movie, this is arguably the one that would offer the most complete realization of that vision.
From a business standpoint, it allows HBO Max to squeeze more juice out of the hefty investment. Zack Snyder’s movie wouldn’t have been cheap anyhow. But once he left the project and Joss Whedon’s reshoots were factored in, Justice League had a reported $300 million budget by the time it hit theaters in 2017. It lost money at the box office. Yet, the studio shelled out an additional $70 million or so to finish the Snyder Cut after years of relentless fan demand. It was purely to get subscribers for HBO Max. So, releasing multiple versions of the movie is a way to help maximize the investment. Zack Snyder announced earlier today that both the color and black and white versions will hit theaters soon for IMAX charity screenings.
Whether or not that pays off, from a financial standpoint, remains to be seen. Critically though, it’s no contest. Zack Snyder’s Justice League currently holds a 73 percent critical approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes to go with a stellar 96 percent audience score. The theatrical version, for comparison’s sake, has a 40 percent critical rating and 71 percent audience score. It’s not even close. Be that as it may, Warner Bros has no intentions to “restore the Snyderverse” anytime soon. The Justice is Gray edition of Justice League is streaming now on HBO Max. You can check out the announcement from the Zack Snyder’s Justice League Twitter account.