Every Green Lantern Plan In Zack Snyder’s Justice League Trilogy
Zack Snyder’s Justice League trilogy had plans for the Green Lantern Corps and while the Snyder Cut set up those ideas, there would have been more.
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Had Zack Snyder’s Justice League trilogy been fully executed, Green Lantern would have been part of those plans. After what happened with the theatrical cut of Justice League in 2017, the Snyder Cut finally got its due to show the director’s original vision for some of DC Comics’ most beloved superheroes. The four-hour cut allowed fans to see how the team came together and the original ideas with not just Steppenwolf, but also Darkseid as the overall main antagonist. Several characters that were removed from the theatrical cut got their chance to shine while other players whose arcs were rewritten in 2017 got the opportunity to be properly executed.
But even though Zack Snyder’s Justice League included everything the filmmaker had worked on years ago, this was the opening chapter for an envisioned trilogy. Storyboards and concept ideas have become publicly both before and after the Snyder Cut was released on HBO Max. While some of those plans would have been retooled for potential live-action sequels, there were still arcs planned for how Zack Snyder’s Justice League 2 and Zack Snyder’s Justice League 3 would have played out. Despite Zack Snyder’s Justice League featuring Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Cyborg, Aquaman, and even Martian Manhunter: Green Lantern was absent from the Snyder Cut’s lineup.
Normally, in most Justice League stories, Green Lantern is always one of the founding members of the superhero group. But for Zack Snyder’s Justice League, it was a battle for the director to get the chance to put the Emerald Knight into his story. While the Snyder Cut definitely includes a little Green Lantern Corps action, it wasn’t entirely what he had wanted to do, especially in the sequels. For the time being, Warner Bros. isn’t planning on producing Zack Snyder’s Justice League 2 and Zack Snyder’s Justice League 3 as they are moving forward with other plans for the DC brand. But if the complete trilogy had happened, what was Snyder planning to do with Green Lantern outside of Zack Snyder’s Justice League?
The History Lesson’s Green Lantern
Zack Snyder’s Justice League explored the larger history of how Darkseid had attempted to invade Earth thousands of years ago. When he first came to Earth, Darkseid was at that point known as Uxas and was looking for the Anti-Life Equation. In the theatrical cut, Uxas had been completely removed and replaced with Steppenwolf instead. But Uxas wasn’t prepared for the forces that had come together when he arrived on the planet with his army. The Olympian Gods joined the Amazons, Atlanteans, and the human race to stop Apokolips’s invasion. However, these heroes also had the help of a Green Lantern that participated in the battle against Uxas and the forces of Apokolips.
That Green Lantern was Yalan Gur, who is a minor character in the comics but still canonically a member of the Green Lantern Corps. The history lesson sees him fighting Parademons and trying to help the other heroes stop the Mother Boxes from completing their unity. Yalan’s time in Zack Snyder’s Justice League as well as the theatrical cut was still, unfortunately, the same though. In the 2017 film, Yalan gets murdered by Steppenwolf while in the Snyder Cut, Uxas is the one that takes him out. Not only does Uxas slice off Yalan’s hand with the ring on it, but stabs the Emerald Knight through the chest.
Yalan quickly passes away and the Green Lantern ring begins to float off to find the next bearer. For a brief second during the history lesson in Zack Snyder’s Justice League, Uxas attempt to take the ring, but it gets away and the battle continues. While it was a cameo, it was still neat to see Snyder include Green Lantern in the flashback to establish that the Green Lantern Corps has been active for thousands of years. However, while Yalan was both in the theatrical cut and Snyder’s version, he wasn’t the only Emerald Knight to be part of the HBO Max product.
The Fallen Green Lantern In Knightmare
Yalan Gur may have represented the Green Lanterns of the past in Zack Snyder’s Justice League, but one beloved member did also get revealed as being part of the future. It’s one of those blink-and-you-will-miss-it-cameos because it’s not just any future in which they appear. When the team decides to revive Superman using the final Mother Box, they take him to the Kryptonian Scout Ship to use the genesis chamber. But as The Flash gets ready to charge the Mother Box, Cyborg is warned by the ship’s A.I. to not do it. This prompts Cyborg to have a vision of the Knightmare future that Snyder has been teasing in his past DCEU films.
During the first Knightmare vision in Zack Snyder’s Justice League, Cyborg witnesses what will go wrong if they bring Superman back from the dead. Not only are Wonder Woman and Aquaman murdered, but Darkseid has killed Lois Lane too. That’s how Superman ends up succumbing to the Anti-Life Equation as he helps Darkseid conquer the planet. But as the scene cuts over to the ruins of the Hall of Justice, a dead Green Lantern can be seen within the destroyed headquarters. This Emerald Knight, however, is none other than fan-favorite Kilowog who trains the new Corps recruits.
While Zack Snyder’s Justice League never reveals who specifically killed Kilowog, it became clear that at some point in the future, the Green Lantern did try to help stop the invasion. Despite it being tragic to see his corpse on the ground, it does have a parallel to the history lesson with Yalan. Just like Yalan, Kilowog joined Earth’s protectors to try and stop Darkseid’s second try at taking over the planet. But aside from the Green Lantern cameos in the past and future respectively, why was there not an Emerald Knight in the present time?
The Original John Stewart Appearance
Despite the appearances of Yalan and Kilowog, Zack Snyder’s Justice League was actually set on introducing the Green Lantern John Stewart. Even though Green Lantern Corps was in the development stages during the Snyder Cut’s original production, John would have gotten his live-action debut before his movie. Snyder revealed that he had planned to include John for one scene towards the end of Justice League. While the actor’s identity hasn’t been revealed, Snyder confirmed that he had shot a scene with John who was meant to be the one to visit Bruce Wayne in the end rather than Martian Manhunter.
But Warner Bros. wouldn’t allow the director to put John into the film because they had their own plans for John. According to the director, he was considering quitting Zack Snyder’s Justice League because of the studio’s demand to remove the Green Lantern. Instead, Harry Lennix’s J’onn J’onzz, a.k.a. Martian Manhunter, got put into that scene at the end of the Snyder Cut. While it’s brief, Martian Manhunter reveals to Batman that the Justice League inspired him to come out of the shadows and that they could count on him from now on, knowing that Darkseid is coming.
However, if it hadn’t been for Warner Bros., Zack Snyder’s Justice League would have had one of the main Green Lanterns even for just one scene. Even though they were planning on introducing John as part of Green Lantern Corps, that DCEU project hasn’t made any progress or announced updates for a few years. While Snyder got to film one scene with John, that wasn’t the only famous Green Lantern that would have appeared in Zack Snyder’s Justice League trilogy, as another iconic one was part of the endgame.
Hal Jordan’s Introduction In Justice League 3
Outside of the first installment, Zack Snyder’s Justice League 2 wouldn’t have featured any Green Lanterns since it was a build-up to Knightmare. However, Zack Snyder’s Justice League 3 would have introduced Hal Jordan into the filmmaker’s own version of the DC Universe. The threequel would have begun with Hal crashing into Earth and meeting the team as they fight off an army of Parademons. That would have also set up the friendship between Hal and Barry Allen, a.k.a. The Flash, from the comics. The reason Hal had come to Earth was that he’d be looking for his other partner, presumably John or maybe even Kilowog, but that’s never specified.
Hal would end up joining the Justice League in their mission to undo this reality by having The Flash run back in time to warn everyone. Unfortunately, Green Lantern would get defeated by the corrupted Superman who focuses his heat vision into Hal’s ring that would explore and cost the hero one of his arms. However, thanks to Barry successfully running back in time to warn Batman of the Knightmare future, Zack Snyder’s Justice League 3 would end with the entire DC Universe going up against Darkseid and the forces of Apokolips in the present. Green Lantern would bring the Green Lantern Corps to Earth and help them fight Darkseid once and for all.
According to Snyder, it appeared that Ryan Reynolds, who played Hal in 2011’s Green Lantern, was the director’s choice for the DCEU iteration of the character. It’s very unlikely that Reynolds’ Hal in Zack Snyder’s Justice League 3 would have been the same version he played in 2011, but only Snyder can answer that. Although given the fact that even the Snyder Cut was highlighting the Multiverse, perhaps it wouldn’t have been impossible. Despite not being on-screen, there was definitely a plan in mind to incorporate the Green Lantern in more ways than one, had Zack Snyder’s Justice League trilogy gotten to play out the way the filmmaker had hoped.