Snyder Cut Leak: Possible Reasons behind HBO Max “Glitch”

by Shoubhik Sen
Zack Snyder's Justice League

After 3 years of a united effort, Warner Bros finally green-lit Zack Snyder’s Justice League on May 2020; the famed and beloved SNYDER CUT. However with just over a week from release, part of the film was leaked on the streaming platform HBO Max. What could be the plan behind the leak??

Viewers who clicked on TOM & JERRY were greeted with the 1st hour of Zack Snyder’s Justice League. Though HBO Max was quick to take it down, it stayed long enough to generate abuzz and actually, break the internet.

Thus today, we look at possible explanations as to why this happened. This is because such a “glitch”, that too in a streaming service that has layers of protocols to follow, doesn’t seem quite right. This quote by music composer Tom Holkenborg a.k.a Junkie Xl is explanatory enough: –

99% of the time, leaks are an inside job

Tom Holkenborg (Junkie XL)

Plan by Warner Bros (W.B) Kill the Hype

W.B has always been looking to sabotage Snyder’s vision since the polarizing reactions to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Even after the 2017 debacle, Geoff Johns and co. continued their course correction.

Geoff Johns
GEOFF JOHNS (ex-D.C.E.U President)

Possibly, this leak also was an attempt to kill the hype surrounding Zack Snyder’s Justice League. W.B thought that a glimpse of this film will satisfy the casual viewers and thus, not many people will view the full 4 hours on the day it releases.

However, as we could see on the internet, this move ended up adding fuel to the hype. This means that now, more people are willing to watch Zack Snyder’s Justice League that before.

To justify them calling the Snyder Cut a “Cul-de-sac”

Walter Hamada (President, DC Films) in an interview, was asked about the future of the SNYDERVERSE i.e the possible sequels to Zack Snyder’s Justice League. To this, he answered that this film was a “Cul-de-Sac”. This means that according to him, there exists no possibility of continuing this series of films.

This leak that happened yesterday, could have been an attempt by Hamada and co. to justify their statement. What they could have thought is that showing a relatively unfinished and incomplete version of the movie would put off many fans. This would lead to less viewership for it on 18th March 2021.

This move is understandable as Hamada is already having bad blood with Cyborg actor Ray Fisher, especially after the latter exposed the racism and toxic set behavior by Hamada’s associates in 2017. Thus, this leak could be a way of getting back at Fisher, as well as a way of justifying their actions to do away with Snyder’s vision back then.

Plan by AT&T to Build More Hype (As Snyder Cut is its Biggest Attraction)

This is by far the most believable theory. At least, this is a rather positive one that also brings hope for future Snyder D.C.E.U Projects. This one also lines up with the fan reactions on Twitter and other platforms over the leak.

The leak could have been the plan by AT&T all along, to build more hype for Zack Snyder’s Justice League. The reason we are getting this movie is because of AT&T acquiring W.B. Thus, that makes them directly in charge of the content streaming on HBO Max. Additionally, this also means that it’s AT&T that’s responsible for marketing HBO Max Content.

Considering the fact that ZSJL is the most awaited “Max Original”, this is a good marketing strategy. Secondly, “The Falcon and The Winter Soldier” releases on Disney+ on 19th March 2021 i.e a day after ZSJL. AT&T needed more hype to prevent its overshadowing by the behemoth M.C.U.

A small and temporary leak brings a plethora of advantages as well: –

  1. Casual Viewers who had no idea about this film got a glimpse of it’s 1st hour and understood the hype behind it. Thus now, even these people or at least majority of them are eagerly waiting for Zack Snyder’s Justice League, to watch the rest of the 3 hours.
  2. Many people were quick to comment that “ZSJL is the same movie as 2017’s Theatrical Cut; just longer and darker”. When these people would’ve seen the film, many would’ve realized that this is a totally different movie that 2017’s. Thus, more viewers on 18th.
  3. Rest of the fans got an early treat. Forget killing the hype, this leak generated more buzz than before. The fan out pour on the internet is proof enough that the Hype Train is fully on track.


We still have no idea of the actual intention behind the leak. All we know is that Zack Snyder’s Justice League ended up generating a whole lot of buzz. Whether it’s Twitter, Facebook, Twitch, YouTube or any other platform, fans trended this leak worldwide. This is really contrary to what Hamada, Johns and co thought about it.

This shows the enormous potential this film has for HBO Max; a data that AT&T and Warner Bros need to consider. This is proof enough of the fact that Zack Snyder’s Justice League doesn’t deserve to be a Cul De Sac. Instead, as Ray Fisher said, it deserved to be a 6-lane highway. The positive reception shows that there is a demand for sequels in the future.

This incident is proof enough that people love Snyder’s work. It shows that scrapping his vision is not the right business choice. Instead, it’s a major loss making decision.

Zack Snyder’s Justice League starts streaming on HBO Max on 18th March 2021.

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