Entertainment NewsWhy Zack Snyder's Vision Changed 'Watchmen' Ending

Why Zack Snyder’s Vision Changed ‘Watchmen’ Ending


Key Takeaways:
– Zack Snyder modified the ending of Watchmen to prevent visual parallels with tragic events of 9/11.
– The original featured a devastating climax that wouldn't have appealed to a post-9/11 .
– The final version unites humanity, introducing a detail-absent in the original, which frames Dr. as the villain.
– Despite 's interest, he was not cast in a lead role due to conflicts of roles and commitments.

Beginning with a Bold Leap

Zack Snyder plunged into the in 2009 with Watchmen, adapting straight from the same-name DC Comics limited series of 1986-1987. Taking on a dystopian narrative brought numerous hurdles. However, Snyder maneuvered his way with innovative decisions in the casting process and the color palette. This approach became his trademark in successive DC Extended Universe projects.

Tweaking the Storyline Tone

In true Snyder , the filmmaker took liberties to change the story's tone, echoing his methods in Man of Steel. The end of the grim tale deviated significantly from the comics, sparking widespread debate among fans and critics. However, his intent wasn't to inject personal bias but to align with American audience sentiments.

The Real Reason Behind the Watchmen Ending Change

Spoiler alert: Major spoilers for Watchmen movie follow next.

For his Watchmen adaptation, Snyder aimed to preserve the core themes and originality of the comics. However, it became crucial to let go of certain aspects, particularly the ominous ending portraying New York's destruction.

Screenwriter David Hayter revealed on the Script Apart podcast that they deviated from the script to avoid echoes of 9/11. Hayter shared, “we knew that it was going to be very difficult to do the ending of the book, and plus, since 9/11 had happened, we also, I didn't feel that we should have all those images of the dead bodies in Times Square”.

Echoing this sentiment, Hayter further stated, “ should just be blown to shadows, like the Hiroshima shadows that are painted on the walls in the comic book.”

About the Original Series and Snyder's Reprise

Dave Gibbons and Alan Moore's original series pursued a dark tone, addressing the tabooed superheroes' scenario. As the narrative unfolded, Ozymandias faked an alien invasion to unite humanity, causing widespread destruction and . Given the grave events of 9/11, such a portrayal would have been ill-received.

In the movie, this narrative was adapted to frame Dr. Manhattan as the culprit behind humanity's attack, thus unifying nations and preventing nuclear warfare. The contentious ending aimed to temper the catastrophic debate surrounding the plot.

The Missed Opportunity of Casting Tom Cruise

Despite a promising start, Watchmen bagged just $185 million in global sales on a $130 million budget, falling short of expectations. The movie could have fared differently if Tom Cruise was cast in a lead role, as the had personally requested. However, Snyder already confirmed Jackie Earle Haley for the role Cruise sought, setting a conflict of interests in motion.

This snafu led to the unfortunate circumstance of a DC outing without the sensation. Despite these ups and downs, Watchmen continues to resonate with audiences and is available for streaming on Max and the Amazon Channel.

In conclusion, Zack Snyder's calculated changes in Watchmen underpin the role of context and audience sentiments in shaping a film. Although it incited debate, the reinterpretation helped the adaptation stay relevant, sensitive, and captivating for its viewers.

Megan Dianehttps://www.projectcasting.com
Hi, I'm Megan Browne, the Head of Partnerships at Project Casting - a job board for the entertainment industry. As Head of Partnerships, I help businesses find the best talent for their influencer campaigns, photo shoots, and film productions. Creating these partnerships has enabled me to help businesses scale and reach their true potential. I'm excited to continue driving growth by connecting people with projects they're passionate about.


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