Add this to your stockpile of movie trivia. There’s a world in which we might have seen Zack Snyder’s Justice League hit theaters in 2017 with input from Craig Mazin, the creator of HBO’s superb Chernobyl and co-host (with John August) of the popular screenwriting podcast, Scriptnotes.

This isn’t exactly breaking news, but it’s the kind of industry tidbit you might come across while catching up on back episodes of a podcast like Scriptnotes. Apparently, Snyder brought in Mazin and several other writers in an advisory capacity, and they screened Justice League before Warner Bros. scuttled Snyder’s version in favor of drastic reshoots led by Joss Whedon.

Here’s what Mazin had to say about his involvement with Justice League (via The Playlist):

“I saw the Zack Snyder Cut back when he was working on it. Because they were talking about maybe doing a week or reshoots or something like that,” explained Mazin. “And so he invited two or three – I think there were three or four of us, writers, to watch the movie in the state it was in and then just have a conversation about some things that they might be able to do to tweak some things up over the course of a week of writing. And I, you know me, I’m not like a huge superhero movie guy, but I really liked it. I liked it. I thought it was really good. I thought there were a couple things, like ‘OK here’s some suggestions and things.’ And then Zack left the project. And so that was it. Literally, I think he left like the next week. And I never saw the Joss Whedon version.”

For aspiring screenwriters, I would highly recommend this Scriptnotes episode, “How to Write a Movie,” which features Mazin flying solo, walking you through the major beats of a well-structured screenplay.

The SnyderVerse is a World of What Ifs

Snyder had his vision for Justice League restored this year when the so-called “Snyder Cut” (officially known as Zack Snyder’s Justice League) debuted as an HBO Max original. The Snyder Cut used to be a Hollywood unicorn whose very existence seemed suspect — just a what-if of the Marvel sort — until fans demanded that Snyder stick a horn on a real white horse’s head and ride in on it.

Even at four hours, the resulting film was better received than Whedon’s much-maligned theatrical cut of Justice League. It currently sits at 71% on the almighty Tomatometer while the theatrical cut wilts at 40%.

That means it is objectively better because I am an expert of pop culture and have been paid major Marvel money (by DC) to say that. Just kidding, but if you’d still like to lodge a complaint, you can send your hate mail to the dead letter office and post your tweets with the hashtag #MegabucksMarvelPayolaDCMeathead.

Once upon a time, Snyder was also attached to a Star Wars project that was said to be inspired by the Akira Kurosawa classic Seven Samurai. He has since reworked that idea as Rebel Moon, a potential franchise-starter of his own at Netflix. File this Mazin bit under “what if,” next to Snyder’s Star Wars.

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