We knew when The Snyder Cut arrived we’d have a lot to talk about, but we didn’t quite know precisely how much of that conversation would be about future movies that are now unlikely to happen. Director Zack Snyder’s pure, unfiltered version of Justice League is now streaming on HBO Max, and the four-hour opus not only restores his footage that was cut out of the 2017 theatrical release, but also includes a number of teases and setup for two Justice League sequels that Snyder had planned to make before he left the DCEU entirely during post-production on Justice League. And one of those teases involves a pregnancy test glimpsed in Lois Lane’s drawer.
Superman and Lois having a child isn’t entirely rare in the comics, but Snyder’s longterm plan for that child was very Zack Snyder-y. In a new interview with Vanity Fair, the filmmaker reveals that his intention was for the very, very end of Justice League 3 to flash forward 20 years in the future to show that Superman and Lois’ son, Bruce Kent, would become the new Batman.
“It was going to be Lois and Superman’s son,” the filmmaker said. “He doesn’t have any powers, and then he was going to end up being the new Batman… Twenty years later, on the anniversary of [Batman’s] death, they take young Bruce Kent down to the Batcave and they say, ‘Your Uncle Bruce would’ve been proud if you did this.”
Snyder’s intention was for Batman to die somewhere in the midst of Justice League 2 and 3. You see, Superman tasks Batman with protecting Lois while he fights Darkseid, and when Batman fails and Lois dies, Superman succumbs to the Anti-Life Equation and brings about the post-apocalyptic hellscape we keep glimpsing in those Knightmare scenes.
In the epilogue of Zack Snyder’s Justice League, we see Batman and a team of rogues roaming this hellscape, and their plan was for Cyborg to send Flash into the past to warn Batman to protect Lois. He succeeds, Batman sacrifices himself to keep Lois alive, and that sacrifice is what spurs Superman and Lois to introduce their adult son to Bruce’s Batcave.
The whole pregnancy storyline was something Warner Bros. wanted cut out of the film, Snyder says, but at least he got to shoot it. The studio also bristled at his intention to set up a romance between Batman and Lois Lane in Justice League, and they won that round – he didn’t get to film those scenes.
“The intention was that Bruce fell in love with Lois and then realized that the only way to save the world was to bring Superman back to life,” said Snyder. “So he had this insane conflict, because Lois, of course, was still in love with Superman. We had this beautiful speech where [Bruce] said to Alfred: ‘I never had a life outside the cave. I never imagined a world for me beyond this. But this woman makes me think that if I can get this group of gods together, then my job is done. I can quit. I can stop.’ And of course, that doesn’t work out for him.”
As someone who found Zack Snyder’s Justice League to be surprisingly compelling, I have to say I’m kind of curious now to see all of this play out in two epic sequels. Alas, Snyder says Warner Bros. has made clear to him that The Snyder Cut is not canon, and says it’s unlikely he’ll ever made another DC movie.
But stranger things have happened.