Posted on Monday, March 3rd, 2014 by Angie Han
Last week, producer Joel Silver said a little something about how Terry Gilliam‘s Watchmen would have been “a MUCH much better movie” than the one Zack Snyder turned in, complete with a detailed explanation of the ending that Gilliam had had in mind. Snyder himself has read Silver’s words, and (unsurprisingly, and understandably), he’s inclined to disagree.
Bashing Gilliam’s conclusion as “completely insane,” Snyder declared that he’d made the movie himself “to save it from the Terry Gilliams of this world.” And he’s pretty happy with the way his Watchmen turned out, even if Silver wasn’t — Snyder says it’s “probably” his favorite of his own films. Read Snyder’s defense of his movie after the jump.
Snyder discussed Gilliam’s Watchmen with The Huffington Post.
[I]f you read the Gilliam ending, it’s completely insane. [...] Yeah, the fans would have stormed the castle on that one. So, honestly, I made “Watchmen” for myself. It’s probably my favorite movie that I’ve made. And I love the graphic novel and I really love everything about the movie. I love the style. I just love the movie and it was a labor of love. And I made it because I knew that the studio would have made the movie anyway and they would have made it crazy. So, finally I made it to save it from the Terry Gilliams of this world.
While Silver criticized Snyder for being “too much of a slave to the material,” Snyder argued that Gilliam’s version wouldn’t have been faithful enough. “If you love the graphic novel, there’s just no way,” he said. “It would be like if you were doing Romeo and Juliet and instead of them waking up in the grave area, they would have time-traveled back in time and none of it would have happened.”
Snyder attributed the poor reception to his Watchmen to a hard-to-please fanboy culture that misunderstood Watchmen‘s satirical elements.
That’s the problem with comic book movies and genre. And I believe that we’ve evolved — I believe that the audiences have evolved. I feel like “Watchmen” came out at sort of the height of the snarky Internet fanboy — like, when he had his biggest strength. And I think if that movie came out now — and this is just my opinion — because now that we’ve had “Avengers” and comic book culture is well established, I think people would realize that the movie is a satire.
You know, the whole movie is a satire. It’s a genre-busting movie. The graphic novel was written to analyze the graphic novel — and comic books and the Cold War and politics and the place that comic books play in the mythology of pop culture. I guess that’s what I’m getting at with the end of “Watchmen” — in the end, the most important thing with the end was that it tells the story of the graphic novel.
The morality tale of the graphic novel is still told exactly as it was told in the graphic novel — I used slightly different devices. The Gilliam version, if you look at it, it has nothing to do with the idea that is the end of the graphic novel. And that’s the thing that I would go, “Well, then don’t do it.” It doesn’t make any sense.