Zack Snyder Reveals His Ambitious Plan for the Sucker Punch Director's Cut
The director never got the chance to create the movie on his own terms. New footage could change that.
As divisive as Zack Snyder has become in his decade and change in film, the writer-director always stands by his projects. That extends even to Sucker Punch, the 2011 film that may be Snyder’s most derided. At the very least, it’s the director’s lowest-grossing and lowest-rated. It’s not without its merits, and 12 years on it’s gained its own cult following, but even Snyder has some regrets about the film’s final cut.
“Sucker Punch is probably the most obvious example of straightforward, pure satire that I’ve made,” Snyder said in a recent interview with Total Film. “And I still think I didn’t go far enough, because a lot of people thought that it was just a movie about scantily clad girls dancing around in a brothel.”
Sucker Punch follows Baby Doll (Emily Browning), an asylum inpatient that rallies a group of inmates to make a daring escape. Her fight for survival is waged in the mind, and takes on the form of hyperreal samurai duels and battles with Nazi zombies. Very little of the film should actually be taken literally, but so much of it still got lost in translation. It didn’t help that, in Snyder’s fight to secure a budget worthy of his vision, he had to compromise on Sucker Punch’s R-rating, and the film’s nebulous ending.
Snyder describes the experience as “the first time where I really faced like a true, radical restructuring of the film for it to be more commercial.” For all his regrets about how it went down, however, not all hope is lost. Snyder is currently in talks to make a Sucker Punch director’s cut, one that would restore it to his “super controversial,” R-rated ideal. But it wouldn’t just be a re-cut version of the 2011 film: if Snyder has his way, he’ll be able to shoot new footage with the original actors to bring his intended message to life.
In a conversation with Inverse to promote his latest film, Rebel Moon, Snyder revealed that a Sucker Punch director’s cut is on the table. “I’m working with Warner Bros. to try and find a window to go back in,” he said. “Even though we did an extended version, it’s not the fully realized movie.”
Not unlike the infamous Snyder Cut of Justice League, in which Snyder was granted another $70 million to shoot and edit additional footage, the filmmaker hopes to get the band back together to reshoot Sucker Punch’s final scenes. “I think it’s good [if] I can get those guys, Emily [Browning] and Abby [Cornish] and the crew back in,” he said. “Some reshoots would be amazing.”
As exciting as this prospect might be for fans, it still has a long journey to fruition. Warner Bros. would first have to grant Snyder’s request, and the director would need to find time to bring his cast back together. Still, the studio has indulged Snyder before. Sucker Punch is long overdue for a reappraisal, and a fully-realized version of the story could only help.