Written By: Nick Poulimenakos
Justice League may not have been the best film of the year but it might be the most talked about movie to hit the silver screen. Ever since its release, various reports surrounding its troubled production have made their way online and today, we are now learning of an early version of the script that reveals an incredibly different story for DC’s greatest characters.
In an exclusive report by The Wrap, Will Beall, who actually wrote the script for another DCEU film, Aquaman, was brought it to write a script for Justice League. Beall’s version of the film features several different narrative points that differ heavily from Chris Terrio’s, and eventually Joss Whedon’s tale.
The Wrap confirmed that not only did Beall write this script well before the current Justice League film hit theatres, he wrote it in 2011, before Man of Steel and even Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Rises made it to theatres.
Acorrding to the report, Beall opens the film with quick scene on the world of Apokolips before an action set piece featuring Batman, Superman, KGBeast, Killer Croc and Lex Luthor. The action sequence would also include the destruction of a shark tank on the higher levels of Lexcorp in Metropolis and ends with Desaad, a minion of Darkseid, killing Killer Croc and taking the Kryptonite that Luthor had tried to buy from KGBeast, but not before he bites a shark.
Beall’s script also features Darkseid as the main villain, something fans had hoped for, and instead of Batman forming the Justice League with Wonder Woman after fighting Superman in Batman v Superman, both Batman and Superman were seen as allies with knowledge of each other’s secret identities. Bruce and Clark would be seen having coffee at a diner and mentioning other heroes such as Aquaman and Green Arrow. Aquaman does not make an appearance in this story but Bruce and Clark would head to Central City to recruit The Flash.
Connecting to Suicide Squad, Amanda Waller would make an appearance alongside King Faraday with both being in charge of the Department of Metahuman Affairs. Several DC villains would be seen here including Abel Terrant (Tattooed Man), Copperhead, Barbara Minerva (Cheetah) and Solomon Grundy.
The Green Lanterns would be present with John Stewart taking centre stage. He, along wit Hawkman, tried to stop Kanjar Ro from helping Dessad weaponize the Kryptonite leading to an action set-piece inside a space-station nightclub.
As the first act concludes, Steppenwolf and the parademons kidnap Superman and take him to Apokolips which results in Batman going to Themyscira to recruit Diana at the start of act two. Bruce and Diana have a romantic history here. Instead of Cyborg and Aquaman, Barry Allen, Green Lantern John Stewart and Wonder Woman then meet with Batman inside the Batcave. The Batcave is riddled with history as various Bat suits are on display along with classic Batman villain weapons.
John Stewart then returns to Oa, the homeworld of the Green Lantern Corps where he finds every Lantern massacred by Darkseid. He finds the dead bodies of Katma Tui, Kilowag, Guy Gardner, Salakk, and Tomar-Re. Hal Jordan and Kyle Rayner are not mentioned so it can be assumed that they survived or aren’t Lanterns here. Darkseid then makes his move and invades Earth with a brainwashed Superman by his side.
Batman’s armored suit makes an appearance as he battles Krypton’s last son but it is Wonder Woman who free’s Clark from Dessad’s control. Superman then travels through a boom tube, 11 years into the future. In a similar scene to Batman’s “Knightmare” in BvS, Clark finds Earth under Darkseid’s control where 80% of the population has been destroyed. Wonder Woman is leading the resistance with an older Batman as her second-in-command. Bruce and Diana have a son named Clark and in a surprise twist, Lex Luthor is also a member of the resistance. Batman leads a group of fighters named Batman’s Berzerkers that includes villains such as Deathstroke, Captain Boomerang, Huntress, and Cheetah.
In the future, it is Lex who discovers that they can send Flash back in time to warn their past selves of Darkseid’s invasion. This leads to the finale which features Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, and Green Lantern going on the offensive. The heroes travel to Apokolips to save Superman before he can be mind controlled and an all-out battle takes place between The League, the Lantern Corps and the Amazons fighting and defeating Darkseid’s invading forces.
The film ends with past Lex (who is still evil at this point) discussing his upcoming presidential campaign with Mercy Graves when he receives a message from his future self, Future Lex reveals to his past self Superman’s secret identity, Clark Kent.
I should preface this by saying that, while i truly enjoyed Justice League, it’s hard to not get excited about what could have been. Beall’s version of the story is loaded with excitement and fan service. It was actually reported a few years ago by Bad Ass Digest that Warner Bros. thought his script was terrible and went with Zack Snyder’s vision for the DC film-verse.
So what do you think? Would you have much rather seen this version of Justice League? Let us know in the comments down below!