Joss Whedon wasn’t able to make it to San Diego Comic-Con because he’s hard at work on reshoots for Justice League, and now we know a bit more about why it’s keeping him so busy.
Variety reports that Whedon’s (The Avengers) reshoots for Zack Snyder’s working cut of Justice League (Snyder left the project at the end of the original shooting schedule due to a family tragedy) are shaping up to cost the studio an eyebrow-raising $25 million, well above the traditional reshoot budget of $6-10 million for a typical blockbuster. They’re also having a good bit of trouble keeping the A-list cast together for the 2+ months of reshoots, since folks like Henry Cavill (Mission Impossible sequel) and Ezra Miller (Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them) are already booked into other projects.
So what is Whedon actually doing? According to the report, it’s a bit more than just adding a scene or two. He’s apparently punching up dialogue and adding in more “connective tissue” to link the bigger action set pieces that Snyder had already shot. The action is apparently good to go, but the rough cut needed more work to actually tie all those scenes together. Which, after seeing the editing mess that was Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, it’s understandable why that might need work.
If anyone can put the pieces of the puzzle together to turn in a great film, it’s Whedon. He brought The Avengers together for the first time on screen and knows how to write superheroes with great heart and great quips. It sounds like Snyder left behind some epic action scenes — an area that is easily his strongest arena — and Whedon is just piecing the rest of the story around them.
Though a shake-up like this is obviously a bit disconcerting for fans, it's not the end of the world. Projects like Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and World War Z went through similar turmoil during production and turned out just fine — and if anyone can shepherd this one to the finish line — it’s Whedon.
Justice League opens November 17, so we won’t have to wait too much longer to find out.