Ahh, Zack Snyder's Justice League, the movie that was essentially willed into existence by thousands of DC fans. For the uninitiated, Snyder shot almost all the superhero team-up in 2016 until a personal tragedy forced him to step away from the project. Warner Bros. filled the director's chair with Joss Whedon and the finished product, after extensive reshoots, didn't exactly live up to expectations. Jump forward a few years and Snyder got to step in and finish his version. Indeed, it was the movie colloquially known as the Snyder Cut that ended up winning "Best Cheer Moment" at the 2022 Oscars.
It should be noted that the general feeling on the Oscar's "Best Cheer Moment" category was largely meant as an appeasement for the legions of audiences who have been frustrated by the Academy's lack of consideration of popular blockbusters like superhero movies.
The Zack Snyder's Justice League scene in question that clinched this victory featured Ezra Miller's Flash running so fast that time itself is reversed, undoing a catastrophe set in motion by the movie's villain. However, was all as it seemed surrounding Justice League's Academy Award win?
Did Twitter Bots Cause the Snyder Cut to Win?
On Thursday, The Wrap reported that a tool that analyzes Twitter hashtags seems to indicate the most active accounts that contributed to the Oscars' award for fan-favorite movies were likely automated bots. This information coming to light could mean that the vote was rigged in favor of Zack Snyder's Justice League. However, the accounts in question could reportedly not be "definitively declared" as bots.
When pressed on this potential inaccuracy by Vanity Fair, however, The Academy stood by the data, claiming Justice League legitimately came out on top and that system accounted for and banned suspicious accounts from voting.
What's The Real Story With the Oscars' Best Cheer Moment?
When one looks at the competition that the Zack Snyder's Justice League was going up against, things begin to seem a little fishy. Moments from mega-hits like Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: No Way Home were also in the running and did, in fact, end up being the runners-up. Additionally, an iconic sequence from The Matrix ended up placing fifth. These films are almost unequivocally more well known by the general moviegoing audience than the Snyder Cut.
Now, it should be noted that while all the other movies that took the runner runner-up spots had theatrical releases, the Snyder Cut did not. It was released exclusively on the HBO Max streaming service. Given the nature of the pandemic, some people were indeed more willing to catch a movie at home than they were to go out to a cinema. But the idea that a four-hour superhero epic meant for die-hard fans took the top spot over a movie that was, at one time, the highest-grossing film of all time (2019's Avengers: Endgame) while plausible, seems a little suspect.
Fans of Zack Snyder campaigned for years for Warner Bros. To let the director finish his grand vision for the movie for audiences to enjoy. This campaign took many forms but the fanbase was generally very passionate about getting what they wanted. Could this same sense of fervor have carried over to the Twitter vote for a fan-favorite movie award at the Oscars?
This story is probably far from over, but Zack Snyder's Justice League can be streamed in its entirety only on HBO Max.