Justice League‘s rocky postproduction continues apace – the next blockbuster in the DC Expanded Universe has seen its director step down and has undergone extensive reshoots; now, Collider reports that Marvel alum Joss Whedon will receive a writing credit for the film.
Whedon’s involvement with the film has been known since May, when it was announced that the Buffy creator would step in to shepherd Justice League through minor reshoots and post-production after director Zack Snyder chose to step away in the wake of his daughter’s death. At that time, Warner Bros. said that directing would be “minimal” and that the scenes “had to adhere to the style and tone and the template that Zack set.” However, news surfaced in June that the movie was going through intensive reshoots (with the added wrinkle of Mustachegate), indicating that perhaps Whedon would be more involved than was originally announced or intended. Now, it appears that writing for those reshoots were extensive enough to warrant a credit.
Whether this is good or bad news, likely, boils down to your feelings about Snyder and Whedon and how well you think their styles mesh. Both certainly have their impassioned fans and detractors and each are known for very different styles – Snyder for bombastic action, Whedon for quippy dialogue – and it’s hard to know whether those can coexist or how well Whedon can tailor his work to the groundwork Snyder laid. Of course, reshoots and rewrites in general are almost never a good sign regardless of the quality of the writers and directors involved. Even within the DCEU itself, last year’s Suicide Squad underwent massive rewrites and reshoots late in production, reportedly in response to Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice‘s poor critical reception. Whether these reshoots are a response to Wonder Woman‘s massively positive reception earlier this summer or because the movie was generally unwatchable – and whether the final product will be any better for it – remains to be seen.
Whedon’s work on Justice Leauge isn’t the only reason the writer/director has made headlines lately: Earlier this month, The Wrap published a blog post written by his ex-wife Kai Cole, who accused the Avengers director of having a series of affairs with stars, employees and co-workers of his various projects over the course of their 20-year-relationship, which led to impassioned Internet discussion about his work and its place in culture. Whether this news reignites that debate remains to be seen.
Justice League also credits Chris Terrio for its script. The movie, which releases November 17, stars Gal Gadot, Henry Cavill, Amy Adams and Ben Affleck. Whedon will return to the DCEU for Batgirl, which he’s slated to write and direct.