Following a screening of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Ultimate Edition at SnyderCon 2023, director Zack Snyder spoke on how challenging DC’s characters was his “responsibility” while he worked on the DC Extended Universe.
What was Zack Snyder’s goal with the DCEU?
After being asked what he wanted to explore with the more “brutal” version of various DC heroes, Snyder opened up about what he hoped to accomplish with these iconic characters.
“I’m a fan of these characters, so to me, to challenge them is really my responsibility, in some ways … It is not my intention to tear them down,” Snyder explained. “It is my intention to try and understand them and their relevance. The way you show them — whether it be vulnerable, whether it be confused, or whether it be questioning the ‘why’ of their existence — those are all things that, as they are challenged by those things and/or overcome those things … you lock them in as iconographic or as important, I guess.”
Snyder went on to explain that questioning our heroes helps us to understand them better.
“It’s only by challenging them as icons that you end up with the real hero in the end. That was the thesis I had given myself, as far as how these characters would be portrayed. That I would deconstruct them, but in an attempt to … put them on a journey that sets them as what we believe they are or can be.”
Zack Snyder directed three movies in the previous DC Extended Universe: 2013’s Man of Steel, 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and 2017’s Justice League, which had Joss Whedon take over as director during post-production. Snyder would later get another shot at his version of Justice League, releasing Zack Snyder’s Justice League in 2021.