David Hayter worked on Zack Snyder’s adaptation for a long time and remembers the evolution of the end…
On the occasion of the rebroadcast of watch menon Arte at 10:35 p.m. (just after Others), we are republishing the words of its screenwriter, published in the press in July 2020.
Before the TV series Damon Lindelofthere was the film of Zack Snyder. A very faithful adaptation to watch men by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, except for one detail: the absence of a giant squid, at the end, the one that Adrian Veidt / Ozymandias teleports to New York in order to bring world peace. Instead, he traps Doctor Manhattan and blames him for a series of reactor explosions around the world. The absence of the squid may have annoyed the diehards, but the co-writer, David Haytersays they could have ended on something completely different.
Indeed, before Snyder took control of watch menseveral other directors tried their luck, Hayter himself, but also Paul Greengrass (Jason Bourne). And when Greengrass was attached to the film, Hayter’s storyline evolved to take even more liberties with the conclusion of the comics. Freedoms that almost ended up on screen and that Hayter unveils in the Script Apart podcast (via SuperHeroHype).
Paul Greengrass had imagined a Watchmen movie very close to Joker
In this version of the film, Nite Owl killed Ozymandias by crushing him with the Owlship. This prevented Veidt from completing his Machiavellian plan. However, the surviving heroes eventually released a doctored video appearing to show Doctor Manhattan attacking major cities. “We knew it was going to be very difficult to get the comics to end on screen. Also, 9/11 had just happened and I didn’t want to show images of dead bodies in Times Square. I thought it was inappropriate. . I imagined then that people were just going to be reduced to shadows, like the shadows of Hiroshima that are painted in the comics.”
Hayter concludes by explaining that it is Darren Aronofsky which inspired the ending we finally saw in Snyder’s version: “He sent me a note that said, ‘I have a friend who’s a physicist and he had an idea for the movie. What if Doctor Manhattan was the agent of destruction? That clicked in my brain. .”
Zack Snyder from worst to best