To the surprise of virtually no one, the final cut of Justice League was not what director Zack Snyder originally planned, according to the movie’s storyboard artist, Jay Oliva.
He explained this in a conversation with Revenge of the Nerds, in the context of the movement to have a “Snyder Cut” of the movie released.
“That’s what the whole movement is about. It’s not about finishing the film, it’s about showing the fans of Zack’s universe, established in MoS and BvS, the more accurate representation of where the story was supposed to go,” he explained.
Snyder was director of the third two movies in the DC Extended Universe, Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. The first was divisive among fans, while the latter is generally disliked; Justice League is meant to form a sort of trilogy with them, and the three together form the backbone of the DCEU so far.
After finishing principle photography, Snyder was planning some reshoots, but left the project due to the untimely death of his daughter. Warner Bros. hired Joss Whedon, who was reportedly already on board rewriting parts of the script, to direct the rest of the movie, and along the way, make changes to the parts that the studio did not think were working.
It is easy to see that these were substantial changes; the two directors have very different styles, and some rather unfortunate CGI on Superman makes the Whedon scenes even easier to spot. The final product is generally deemed “okay” by fans and critics, but fans of Snyder have been demanding that a cut with Snyder’s original vision be released.
Oliva would have worked with Snyder during the early stages of the movie’s conception, and was also not involved in Warner Bros./Whedon’s edits; as such, he would know what the differences are. As stated, however, no one really doubts that Snyder had a different plan, though many question whether or not a cut of it exists, given that he was planning reshoots himself before leaving the project.
There are rumors that Snyder is privately editing a cut on his own, and negotiating with Warner Bros. about releasing it; these cannot be confirmed or denied, but either way, it seems as if his fans will keep hoping to see his vision until a definitive answer arrives.