In an interview with Jimmy Fallon, Ben Affleck said he was warned by Warner Bros. about the possible negative reaction to his casting, and was advised to remain off the Internet after the casting announcement. He also said to assuage his concerns, the studio showed him negative comments that fans had initially made to previous superhero castings. Affleck said in spite of the studio warnings, he still checked out an online message board. The first comment he read was, "Affleck as Batman? NOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!" After seeing that, he immediately went offline.
The Waynes are seen walking out of a movie theater, a poster of The Mark of Zorro (1940) is seen on the theater wall. Though not exclusive to all origin stories, most Canon Batman Origin stories have the Waynes leaving a screening of the film. This trend was originally set in reference to the fact that Batman was largely based on the character of Zorro.
In this film, Batman wears a voice modulator in his suit to electronically alter his voice. After the casting of Ben Affleck in the role, this was an idea that had been suggested by his friend, director Kevin Smith, as he felt Affleck's natural speaking voice was too high-pitched for Batman.
The film was originally pitched in August 2001 by Andrew Kevin Walker, with Wolfgang Petersen to direct, and Akiva Goldsman to script. Goldsman's script had Bruce Wayne's fiancée slain by the Joker, which sends him on a revenge rampage and brings him into conflict with Superman, who tries to stop him. The film was shelved, but in Goldsman's I Am Legend (2007), a teaser poster for the film (the Superman shield inside a bat) was seen in the opening scene. It was rumored at the time, that George Clooney would be playing Batman (reprising his role from Batman & Robin (1997)), and John Travolta would be playing Superman.
Ben Affleck stated in an interview that he had asked if he could have the batsuit when filming was complete. The producers said yes, but that he would have to pay 100,000 dollars in order to keep it. Affleck quickly changed his mind, and asked if he could just take a picture with it instead.
According to Ben Affleck, he was surprised when he was offered the Batman role, and was at first hesitant to commit to it. He was won over after a meeting with Zack Snyder, who pitched Affleck his vision of Batman, and showed him concept art for the film.
A rough cut of the film was shown for the executives at Warner Brothers. They were reportedly so impressed, that they not only gave the film a standing ovation, but also began negotiating a deal with Ben Affleck to have him make three solo Batman movies, rather than the original plan to make only one.
When discussing the film, Henry Cavill said that it would address a major issue that fans and critics had with Man of Steel (2013), involving the huge amount of collateral damage caused in the film's climax during Superman's battle with General Zod in Metropolis. Cavill said that future battle scenes in movies featuring Superman would involve him making sure to not harm civilians himself and to protect them from evil villains.
When Bruce Wayne, a.k.a. Batman, has been gathering newspaper clips about Superman, a picture is seen where Superman is lifting a car, about to smash it against a rock. The picture is a photo version of the cover of Action Comics #1 from 1938, Superman's debut.
Christian Bale mentioned in an interview, that he felt like he wanted to continue playing Batman. He then jokingly said, "I'm jealous of someone else playing Batman." In reality however, he actually met with Ben Affleck when he was cast, and wished him luck for the making of the film. Bale portrayed Bruce Wayne a.k.a. Batman in the Dark Knight trilogy (2005-2012).
Superman's suit is considerably brighter, with the blue of the suit being lightened to suit the comic version. The yellow background behind the "S" has been made into a bright gold. Certain patterns in the suit have changed also, notably on the "S."
Michael Wilkinson, commenting on the design of the Batman look, said that "Zack Snyder said that the most important thing for our Batman is that he come across as a really hulking big guy who's super pumped up. He's going to be even bigger than our Superman in silhouette. His strength is not through armor and gadgets, he's basically a tower of muscle. Zack is a huge fan of Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns, and we looked a lot at that silhouette when we were creating our silhouette, the cowl I am super proud of. There's always been this huge thing about can he actually turn his head. It does allow full range of movement and he can do all his stunts in the cowl."
When Gal Gadot was asked by a reporter about how she would get Wonder Woman's breasts from the comics, she answered, "Wonder Woman is Amazonian, and historically accurate Amazonian women actually had only one breast. So, if I'd really go 'by the book,' it'd be problematic." (Amazonian warriors would sever their right breast in order to fire a bow and arrow.) Gadot practiced Kung Fu, kick-boxing, sword fighting, jiu-jitsu, and capoeira as part of her physical preparation for the role. There is no historical record to prove that Amazon women had a breast removed. If that were the case, then statues or carvings would have been found with a missing right breast. Other translations of Amazon means "large breasted" or "without husband" rather than "without breast". Check the Etymology of the word Amazon for further details. The idea of Amazonian woman severing a breast for the sake of being better with a bow and arrow comes from the historical fiction novel "The Last of the Amazons" by Steven Pressfield.
It is the first live action film production to feature Batman (but not Robin), Superman, Lois Lane, and Wonder Woman onscreen together. All of their previous appearances together were in animated television programs and direct-to-DVD films.
The producers declared that this is the very first DC Comics film that opens up to a cinematic universe for its heroes, saying, "Batman is being brought into the universe that now this Superman lives in."
Ben Affleck was originally offered to direct the predecessor, Man of Steel (2013), but turned down the offer, saying he wasn't experienced in visual effects shots, "A lesson I've learned is to not look at movies based on budget, how much they'll spend on effects or where they will shoot. Story is what's important."
The glasses Henry Cavill wears as Clark Kent are made by British spectacle designer Tom Davies. Apparently, Michael Wilkinson found most glasses sat too high on Cavill's face, because he has a high bridge. They sought out Tom Davies, who makes bespoke glasses, to design a one-off pair of spectacles for the job.
Michael Wilkinson described the updated Superman suit in the following manner, "There are some subtle differences in the belt, the buckle and the glyph (shield). Zack Snyder loved the idea that there is some Kryptonian script embedded in the suit (at the point where the deltoid meets the bicep). He gave me this fantastic quote that he wanted us to translate into the Kryptonian script and incorporate into the suit. The quote deals with the nature of power and the responsibility that comes with it."
During the Cyborg clip, Dr. Stone mentions he has "US GOV object 6-19-82" which attaches itself to Victor Stone to create Cyborg. The number 6-19-82 is a reference to the comic Tales of the New Teen Titans #1 (June 1982): "Cyborg".
In one scene, Clark says to Perry, "When the Daily Planet was founded, it used to stand for something." Perry responds with, "Yeah, and if it were 1938, you could too." Action Comics #1, featuring Superman, was published in 1938.
At his absolute peak during the process of training for the film and filming it, Henry Cavill reached a size of 100 kilograms (220 pounds). However, he did not remain at that size for the entire duration of the shoot, or the training.
Ben Affleck's portrayal of Batman was actually indirectly predicted and foretold two decades ago. In the opening credits of the Kevin Smith film Mallrats (1995), there are parodies of comic book covers featuring the stars of the movie. The one featuring Ben Affleck parodies none other than Batman. He also calls his vehicle that Bat Mobile when talking to his daughter in Jersey Girl.
Stephen Amell, who plays Oliver Queen a.k.a. Green Arrow in the television series Arrow (2012) reportedly wanted to be in this film. Promotional material revealed that Oliver Queen does exist in the DC Extended Universe.
Batman is only called "Batman" once out loud in this movie, by Perry White ("nobody cares about Clark Kent taking on the Batman). Most of the time he is referred to as "the Bat". However, the writing on the Robin suit in the Batcave also calls him Batman.
During the Batman versus Superman fight, in one of the walls in the foreground you can see spray painted the Latin rhetorical question "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?" The exact literal translation of this is "Who will guard the guards themselves?" Which is a prominent theme in the film. Also in Justice League Unlimited: Divided We Fall (2005), Batman makes this question in Latin to Green Arrow to which he gives a paraphrased reply "Who guards the guardians? We got it covered". It is also a major theme and repeated quote - "Who watches the watchmen?" - throughout Watchmen (2009), which Zack Snyder also directed.
When Wallace visits the wall etched with the names of the people who died during Superman's battle with Zod, most of the names on the wall are the names of crew members who have worked on Zack Snyder movies.
Ben Affleck stated in an interview that Jesse Eisenberg, who plays Lex Luthor in this film, was the most interesting character. Eisenberg has previously said that Chris Terrio (writer) has created his character with psychological realism.
Before Ben Affleck was cast as Bruce Wayne a.k.a. Batman, he was reportedly approached by Warner Brothers to direct a Justice League film adaptation, in which he would have also portrayed Batman. He was also previously approached to direct Man of Steel (2013).
During the battle between Batman and Superman, Batman says "I bet your parents taught you that you mean something; that you're here for a reason." Jonathan Kent, played by Glenn Ford in Superman (1978), says to Clark "And one thing I do know, son, and that is you are here for a reason."
Ben Affleck is seventeen months older than Christian Bale, marking the first time the actor taking on the role of Bruce Wayne a.k.a. Batman is older than the actor who last played the role in a live action movie, since the modern movie sequence started in 1989. In all other Batman roles since, the actor succeeding the role has been younger than the actor who previously played the character. Val Kilmer took the role from Michael Keaton, and he is eight years younger. George Clooney, who is eighteen months younger, took the role from Kilmer. Bale is thirteen years younger than Clooney. The first, and only other, time this happened was in 1949, when Robert Lowery took over the role from Lewis Wilson, who played Batman in 1943.
Scott Adkins auditioned for the role of Batman before Ben Affleck was cast. When asked in an interview why he wasn't chosen, Adkins wryly responded "Look, Ben Affleck was always going to have the part, all right? He's got Oscars."
Diana Prince a.k.a. Wonder Woman is never addressed by either name on screen, in either the extended cut or the theatrical release. She is only referred as Miss Prince by an Air Stewardess. Most characters in her 2017 solo theatrical film address her as "Diana". Colonel Darnell in that film addresses her as "Miss Prince".
When Bruce Wayne (Batman) and Clark Kent (Superman) meet for the first time at Lex Luthor's party, the song being played is "Night and Day," performed by Richard Cheese a.k.a. Mark Jonathan Davis. In fact, in the instant right before they meet, the lyrics "Night and Day..." can be heard. Batman and Superman are often referred to, respectively, as "Night" and "Day," not only in the comics, but in this film by Lex Luthor.
The glass house portrayed as Bruce Wayne's house is almost an exact copy (though slightly longer and painted black) of Mies van der Rohe's Farnsworth House in Plano, Illinois. The movie house was built in Orion Township, Michigan, about forty miles north of Detroit. At one point, it was on Google Maps, where one could take a 360 degree tour of it, as well as the Batcave. The movie house is outfitted with Mid-Century Modern furniture, very similar to what is on display in the Farnsworth House.
When Bruce Wayne enters the Wayne family crypt, a stained glass window depicting a guardian angel in a blue clothes and red cape over a burning city can be seen. The angel's appearance resembles that of Superman, foreshadowing Superman as a guardian angel protecting a burning city.
Bill Finger (developer) co-created Batman, originally named "the Bat-Man" who first appeared in Detective Comics #27 (May 1939). However, Bob Kane didn't publicly acknowledge Finger's contributions until years after Finger's death. As such, this film is the first theatrical feature film to officially credit Finger as co-creator of Batman.
This is the second superhero film in which Ben Affleck played a starring role. The first was as Matt Murdock a.k.a. Daredevil in Daredevil (2003). Similar to Batman, Daredevil was also a martial artist, and was driven to crime-fighting, due to the death of a family member.
In the Daily Planet office, a cubicle belonging to "Jay Oliva, Sports Writer" can be seen. A black and yellow GCU (Gotham City University) football jersey is seen. Jay Oliva is a Filipino-American storyboard artist, film producer, and animated film director working for Warner Brothers Animation, who has worked on many Batman, Superman, and Justice League animated films, and also worked as a storyboard artist on this film. Black and yellow are colors traditionally associated with Batman, who is from Gotham CIty.
Gal Gadot reportedly had a difficult time waiting for her time to come, during the Wonder Woman auditions with some other actresses. Being told to wait in her trailer, "I decided to put on Beyoncé. Who runs the world? Girls! I just started to dance, and I let my anxiety go. Thank you, Beyoncé!"
Holly Hunter plays a Senator investigating Superman for his destructive actions and powers. In The Incredibles (2004), she voices Mrs. Incredible a.k.a. Elastigirl, who is in hiding, due to society's suspicion, and fear of superheroes' destructive powers.
The line "This is flesh and blood" is taken from Excalibur (1981), the "Coming Soon" film at the theater Bruce Wayne was at with his parents the night they are killed. A similar line is said in Batman Begins (2005).
It was rumored that Callan Mulvey would be playing the Joker in this film. However, this turned out to be untrue, when it was announced that Jared Leto would play the role in the DC Cinematic Universe.
Jay Baruchel, who was cast as Maxwell Lord in George Miller's unrealized Justice League film, mentioned in an interview that he watched the extended cut of the film seven times, and named it as one of his two favorite films of 2016. The other was Nocturnal Animals (2016), which also starred Amy Adams.
In response to the negative and mixed reviews, Ben Affleck (Batman) said "We made this movie for the fans, not the critics." His co-star Henry Cavill (Superman) said similar things in other interviews.
When Jonathan Kent talks to Clark, he mentions a flood that he and his own father stopped from destroying the Kent farm. That diverted water destroyed the Lang farm, though. Lana Lang was a childhood sweetheart of Superman in the comics.
In the scene where Martha Kent gives Lois Lane the engagement ring, the wallpaper in Clark's room is a star pattern with seven points. This is a reference to the phrase "Unite the Seven" uniting all seven members of the Justice League.
After driving his vehicle through the streets of Metropolis, Bruce Wayne exits the vehicle. A street sign that reads "Shelby" can be seen above him. "Shelby" is the name of the Kent family dog, who appears in comics, such as Superman - For All Seasons. He also appears in Smallville (2001), having been introduced in Smallville: Krypto (2005).
When Clark reads the news article on the consequences of the Bat-Brand on inmates, the article contains the phrase "who watches the watchmen?" in a quote by someone named Harvey, whose last name is cut off, speaking on behalf of the Gotham City Police Department. The quote is a reference to Watchmen (2009). "Harvey" may either be the character District Attorney Harvey Dent or Detective Harvey Bullock, both regular characters in various Batman stories.
There was massive fan speculation that Dan Amboyer would be portraying Hal Jordan in the build up to the film. Amboyer's own website put this to rest, when it was revealed he would be playing Lieutenant Christie.
The entire site of the ruins of Scarsdale Hall, in Derbyshire, England was laser scanned over two days capturing 50,000 points of detail per second building a 3D recreation which was then incorporated with 2D photographs to form the texture of a building and became the burnt out shell of Wayne Manor.
After doing the score for this movie, Hans Zimmer decided to retire from the superhero genre, and quit composing for the DCEU, saying that Ben Affleck "lacked the pain that Christian Bale had". But would later return to the superhero genre to do the score for X-Men: Dark Phoenix.
Richard Armitage, Orlando Bloom, and Luke Evans were considered for the role of Bruce Wayne a.k.a. Batman. All three men were given roles in The Hobbit trilogy directed by Peter Jackson. Armitage as Thorin Oakenshield, Evans as Bard the Bowman, and Bloom reprising his role as Legolas from The Lord of the Rings trilogy, also directed by Jackson.
Ben Affleck starred as Daredevil, a Marvel character, before starring as Batman, a DC character. Also in 2016, Ryan Reynolds starred as Deadpool, a Marvel character, after previously starring as Green Lantern, a DC character.
No one in the film actually calls Doomsday by that name. The Kryptonian ship's interface refers to the monster during its creation as "The abomination without name." Lex describes it to Superman as "your doomsday". Everyone else simply refers to it using terms like "thing" or "creature".
The 1981 film Excalibur is one of director Zack Snyder's favorite films and was one of the main influences to the film. There are many visual references to the 1981 film in Batman v Superman including the movie poster in the beginning of the film when the Waynes walk out of the theater.
This was the second time Michael Cassidy and Scoot McNairy will be in a movie that has Ben Affleck as a lead actor, and the third time that this pairing has been the case for Affleck and McNairy. The first time was for Argo (2012), where Cassidy was an analyst and McNairy was Joe Stafford, one of the six hostages. The second was in Gone Girl (2014), where Affleck's character, Nick Dunne, has a meeting with McNairy's character.
Scoot McNairy has played characters from both the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and the DC Extended Universe. As Jackson Norris, a "reporter" in Marvel One-Shot: All Hail the King (2014) and as Wallace Keefe, an employee for Wayne Enterprises in this movie.
The actor and actress portraying Bruce Wayne's parents, are known for previous live-action comic book adaptions. Jeffrey Dean Morgan played Edward Blake a.k.a. The Comedian in Watchmen (2009), while Morgan and Lauren Cohan are cast members of The Walking Dead (2010), with Cohan playing Maggie Green, and Morgan playing the villainous Negan.
With the release of this film, Ben Affleck becomes the second person to appear in both a Daredevil movie and a Batman movie. The first was Coolio, who played a "banker" for motorcycle races in Batman & Robin (1997), and a defendant in Daredevil (2003); though the latter scenes were removed from the theatrical version of that movie.
Gal Gadot is the second actress who participated in a beauty pageant and portrayed Diana Prince/Wonder Woman respectively. Lynda Carter who portrayed this comic book character in the 1970s television series also participated in a beauty pageant prior to landing in the role.
Michael Shannon never actually shot any scenes for this film and the production used a rubber dummy for Zod's corpse, he stated, "In the movie there's a large rubber version of my naked body that Lex Luthor is playing with. I was not, the only thing I did for that is I did some ADR of some lines that Zack [Snyder] thought he might use in the movie of my disembodied spirit talking to Lex Luthor."
Marks the fifth theatrical portrayal of Lex Luthor. It is his fourth time as the main antagonist, the most of any supervillain in any franchise. William Stryker is second, with five appearances, twice as the main villain. Catching up is the Joker, with three and two.
Ben Affleck plays Batman, a character which is based on bats, a flying mammal that uses echo-location. Ben had earlier played a blind superhero in Daredevil (2003), who also uses a process similar to echo-location to perceive his surroundings.
This movie is the 10th cinematic appearance of Superman following; Superman (1948), Atom Man vs. Superman (1950), Superman vs. the Mole Men (1951), Superman (1978), Superman II (1981), Superman III (1983), Superman IV: The Quest for Peace (1987), Superman Returns (2006), The Man of Steel (2013).
This movie marks the 11th cinematic outing of Batman following; Batman (1943), Batman and Robin (1949), Batman (1966), Batman (1989), Batman Returns (1992), Batman Forever (1995), Batman and Robin (1997), Batman Begins (2005), The Dark Knight (2008) and The Dark Knight Rises (2012).
Ben Affleck and Diane Lane starred together in "Hollywoodland" (2006). Affleck played George Reeve, one of the earliest actors to portray Superman, and Lane played Reeve's lover. In other words, Affleck went from playing Superman to Batman, while Lane went from playing Superman's girlfriend to playing his mother.
The invitation to Lex Luthor's house sent to Bruce Wayne has the house residing in the state of "DM", this is not an abbreviation for any state. The zip code listed on the invitation is 33862, which is for Lake Placid, Florida.
The trivia items below may give away important plot points.
Batman has a Robin costume that reads: "The joke's on you." This is a reference to Jason Todd, who served as the second Robin, Batman's sidekick, and who was tortured and beaten to death by the Joker. In some story lines, Jason Todd returns as the murderous vigilante, the Red Hood, and in others, he never actually died, but instead suffered endlessly at the hands of the Joker in an attempt to turn him into an heir to the clown prince of crime.
The Flash appearing from the future, to deliver an ominous message to Bruce Wayne, is a nod to Marv Wolfman's "Crisis On Infinite Earths" which featured The Flash doing the exact same thing, including disappearing before he could make it clear what exactly he was warning Batman about.
In the film, Superman apparently dies but at the end his heart is heard beating during his funeral. In "The Dark Knight Returns", Batman fakes his own death and Superman is the only one who hears his heart beating.
During the dream sequence while Bruce waits for the files to decrypt, a giant Omega symbol on the sand and some Parademons helping Superman's soldiers can be seen. Parademons and the Omega symbol are linked to Darkseid, ruler of planet Apokalips, and an archenemy of the Justice League.
A couple days after the release of the movie, Warner Brothers released a deleted scene, which included Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) interacting with Steppenwolf, who is rumored to be the main villain in Justice League (2017). Zack Snyder said that this clip acts as the movie's post-credits scene. This scene is included in the Ultimate Edition version of the film. However, it does not take place after the credits.
At least three of Batman's hand-to-hand takedowns in the warehouse are taken directly from the Batman: Arkham games. One where he bursts through a wall, another when he breaks a thug's arm backwards, and one where he throws a thug's face straight to the ground. Additionally, there are: the batclaw slam, when Batman uses his batclaw to draw an enemy closer to his fist which knocks him (the enemy) down, and the use of devices that destroy the thugs' weapons (a.k.a. the Disruptor).
A deleted scene, made available online after the movie was released, depicts Lex talking with hologram of Steppenwolf who wields a hologram of three Mother Boxes. As a S.W.A.T. team comes in to arrest Lex, Steppenwolf disappears, hinting that Lex knows more than he lets on.
When Superman begins to fly into space with Doomsday, the government launches a nuclear missile, which leaves Superman floating in space. The scene with Superman decaying in space after being hit with the nuclear rocket is similar to a sequence from The Dark Knight Returns, from which this film takes ideas. In the graphic novel, Superman is caught in a nuclear explosion from a nuclear warhead, he then absorbs sunlight from plants so that he can regain his powers. This is different from the film, however, as Superman gains strength back from the sun, as the Earth's rotation causes its rays to come into contact with him.
Superman's name was mentioned multiple times during the movie, Batman's only once by Perry White (most of the time he's only referred to as The Bat), and Wonder Woman's, despite her prominent role, not even once, only her undercover name is mentioned once as Ms. Prince.
Lex Luthor uses his own blood to resurrect General Zod and turn him into Doomsday. In the DC Comics, a secret laboratory called Project Cadmus uses Luthor's blood to mix it with Superman's DNA in order to replicate Superman after his death by Doomsday, creating Conner Kent, new Superboy.
In the final battle, Wonder Woman uses silver bracelets as weapons to attack Doomsday, sending a powerful energy wave. In the DC Comics, they are called Bracelets of Submission, and Wonder Woman is capable of using them to deflect bullets from any automatic fire, project energy blasts and other projectile weaponry and to absorb forces from a long fall.
In the original comics, The Justice League was formed when the alien being Starro came to conquer Earth. Here, it appears that Future Batman sends The Flash back in time to warn Bruce about Superman. This is most likely a nod to when Batman sent The Flash back in time to tell everyone that Darkseid had corrupted Superman. This scene could most likely set up either Justice League (2017) or Justice League Part Two.
In "The Dark Knight Returns", a four issue mini series published in 1986, Batman and Superman fight long after the Justice League is disassembled. In this movie, they fight before the League is even formed.
Alfred jokes about the possibility that Bruce Wayne someday turns into the father of a new generation of the Wayne family. In the comic "Batman: Son of the Demon", published in 1987, Batman and Talia Al'Ghul become the parents of Damian Wayne, who eventually became the fifth Robin, the Boy Wonder (following Dick Grayson, Jason Todd, Tim Drake, and Stephanie Brown).
The device Silas Stone uses to rebuild his son Victor (a.k.a. Cyborg) is a Mother Box, that in DC Comics can teleport people through Boom Tubes, and it comes from Apokolips, Darkseid's home planet. Mother Box and the Boom Tubes are also used by the people of New Genesis, Apokolips' good version, who, lead by Highfather, try to defeat Darkseid and his evil companions.
Doomsday, in this version, is based on anything but his origin in the comics (the ultimate lifeform created by scientists on Krypton), and arguably incorporates elements from the Golden Age Green Lantern villain Solomon Grundy (an undead villain brought back to life).
During the battle between Batman and Superman, Batman utilizes different weapons in his fight against Superman. Some of these weapons have similarities to weapons from The Dark Knight Returns. The sonic amplifier weapons that deploy when Superman steps on a panel in the ground have similarities to Batman's sonic rifle from the graphic novel. The Kryptonite grenades that Batman fires from his grenade launcher are similar to the Kryptonite arrow that Green Arrow uses against Superman in the book. The two both explode and emit Kryptonite Gas from their cases.
In the end of the movie, written on the tombs are the words "If you seek his monument, look around you". This is, famously, the translation of the Latin phrase on architect Christopher Wren's tomb at St. Paul Cathedral in London, England. Wren is best known for rebuilding the cathedral, along with most of Central London, after the Great Fire of 1666, so everything people see around them while at the site is, effectively, Wren's work.
At the end of the movie, Lex Luthor's prison uniform sports the prisoner number 16-TK-421. TK-421 is a reference to Star Wars. During the making of this movie and Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (2015), both Zack Snyder and J.J. Abrams poked friendly fun at each other's respective films. Jon Stewart declined an offer from Abrams to cameo as a stormtrooper but filmed a brief appearance as himself hosting The Daily Show (1996) making jokes about Superman, which was cut from this film's theatrical release (likely because he'd left The Daily Show prior to its release) but included in the extended cut.
At the end of the rooftop confrontation between Lex Luthor and Superman, Lex warns Superman of the time left to kill Batman to save his mother, saying "When you came here you had an hour...now it's less." The extended version of the movie is 2 hours and 54 minutes long, excluding the end credits. Superman actually arrives on the rooftop to confront Lex at 1 hour and 54 minutes into the movie. When he arrived, there was an hour left of the movie.
When Clark Kent is in the mountains, he encounters the ghost of Jonathan Kent (Kevin Costner). Although it seems to be a vision or hallucination, this experience is based on fact, and is known as Third Man Factor, which occurs in situations of extreme risk or mortal danger where voices, or even presences help to keep a person alive. One of the most common places where Third Man Factor happens, is the top of a mountain.
Lois Lane's photographer, who turns out to have a listening gadget in his camera, and is then murdered by the terrorists because of this, is not named in the theatrical cut. In the extended version, he is revealed to be Jimmy Olsen, "Superman's pal" from the old comic books. Zack Snyder explained that in this reinterpretation of Superman's world, there isn't anything for Jimmy to do, hence the decision was made to eliminate him in a dramatic fashion.
While the movie's title is largely interpreted as being a versus fight between Batman and Superman, it actually has a much more accurate meaning that even explains the central plot of the movie. The key is the use of "v" instead of "vs". In legal terms, the use of "v" indicates that one party has a grievance with or is coming after the other party. In the movie's case then, the phrase "Batman v Superman" implies Batman has a problem with Superman (due to the destruction in the Battle of Metropolis in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)) and is thus coming after him.
Despite previous cinematic incarnations portrayed by Gene Hackman and Kevin Spacey, where Lex Luthor was shown as a criminal mastermind wanted for justice, Luthor is now head of a complex corporation named LexCorp. This reflects his portrayal in 1987's Superman comic reboot, following the limited series "Crisis on Infinite Earths" published in 1985 (which restarted all DC Universe), where Lex Luthor is depicted as a powerful and wealthy businessman of his own company LexCorp, who becomes obsessed with defeating Superman. This version of Luthor was also featured in the television series' Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman (1993) and Smallville (2001). This portrayal however, seems to also incorporate 'mad scientist' traits which draws from the character's early comic appearances when he was known simply as "Luther".
In the video clip introducing Cyborg, his father refers to the mysterious shape-changing cube that merges with him as "Object 61982." Though he first appeared in DC Comics Presents #26 in October 1980, Cyborg debuted as a Teen Titan in Tales of the New Teen Titans on June 19, 1982.
When Lois Lane is walking towards Anatoli Knyazev, the song "Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye" (written by Cole Porter; performed by Mark Jonathan Davis & Lounge Against The Machine) can be heard. The lyric in question is "Every time we say goodbye, I die a little." This is a foreshadowing of what Knyazev says to Martha Kent after she has been kidnapped: "We must say goodbye soon. And every time we say goodbye, you die a little."
Although not confirmed, Bruce Wayne's nightmare could be interpreted as the DC Extended Universe heading towards an adaptation of the popular fighting game series "Injustice". Parallels include Superman being a dictator, Batman leading a resistance force against Superman, a military at Superman's whim, and the mention of "she was my world, and you took her from me" by Superman, could reference Lois Lane's death. This could also be reinforced when the Flash makes his cameo telling Bruce Wayne that "Lois Lane is the key" and "Bruce was right about him".
At the beginning of the movie, the Wayne family is seen walking under a marquee advertising the movie Excalibur (1981). In this movie, King Arthur is killed when Mordred runs him thru with his sword. Arthur then grabs Mordred by the hands and forces the sword deeper inside him so he can get close enough to kill Mordred. This foreshadows the climax of the battle between Superman and Doomsday.
In the scene where Lois Lane is in Clark Kent's bedroom weeping on his bed after his death, the wallpaper mimics the wallpaper in Hogarth Hughes' bedroom in "The Iron Giant". This may be a tribute by Zack Snyder, since in The Iron Giant (1999), the giant wanted to be like Superman and do good deeds for Earth and its people. In the end of the movie, he sacrifices himself to save the town of Rockland, Maine from the nuclear warhead. In a similar way, Superman sacrifices his life to kill Doomsday, and save Earth.
According to Batman-News, the suit of armor is outfitted with Kryptonite and packing firepower beyond raw strength (in this case, "missiles"). The details are claimed to be secondhand from Ben Affleck's trainer on the film, Rehan Jalali. That implies these details be taken with a grain of salt, but there has been prior evidence that Zack Snyder would be turning to Kryptonite to help even the playing field, despite keeping it absent from Man of Steel (2013) entirely.
A "Death of Superman" adaptation, titled Superman Reborn, was planned in 1993, written by Jonathan Lemkin. The story involved Superman's life force going into Lois Lane after he died, causing an immaculate conception. Their child grows to age 21 in three weeks, and becomes the resurrected Superman. Gregory Poirier re-wrote the script, and his version had Brainiac creating Doomsday, and an alien named Cadmus resurrecting Superman to defeat Brainiac.
After Clark's funeral, Lois stays behind and drops a handful of soil onto Clark's casket. In the television series Smallville (2001), Clark Kent (Tom Welling) does the same thing at Jonathan Kent's funeral in season five, Lionel Luthor's funeral in season seven, and the destroyed truck, where Lex Luthor was killed, in season eight.
When Lex Luthor places Zod's corpse into the water of Genesis Chamber, he says to Zod: "You flew too close to the sun". This is a reference to the Greek myth of Icarus, who used a pair of wings attached to him with wax to escape from the Labyrinth. His father Daedalus warned him not to fly too close to the sun (which would melt the wax) but Icarus ignored him, fell, and drowned in the sea.
This is the second time Michael Cassidy has portrayed a Daily Planet staff member, who has been unceremoniously knocked off by Lex Luthor; in the seventh season of Smallville (2001), Cassidy's character, Grant Gabriel, was revealed to be the clone of Lex's deceased baby brother, Julian, whom Lex murders once he becomes too close to their father, Lionel. Cassidy's Jimmy Olsen is killed in this film, as part of Lex Luthor's machinations to turn public ridicule against Superman.
When Bruce Wayne is in his new office building, he gets checks with red writings on them, and newspaper headlines in an envelope with the same red writing on it, haunting Bruce, and with his family not saving their youngest son Lincoln March Wayne after he was presumed dead in Arkham Asylum years ago. Lincoln March Wayne is the head leader of Court of Owls empire.
When Luthor confronts Lois Lane on the helipad, he quotes Vladimir Nabokov's novel Lolita, "Plain Lo in the morning. Lola in slacks." Jeremy Irons (Alfred Pennyworth) starred as Humbert Humbert in Lolita (1997).
In the comic book "Death of Superman", Doomsday is killed by Superman during a simultaneous punch. In Smallville (2001), he's just put out of commission, as the Justice League from the future sends him to the end of time to fight no one. This way was the safest, as the League knew Doomsday could not be killed.
This is the first film in 3-D to feature not just Batman, but Wonder Woman, Cyborg, The Flash and Aquaman. Superman's first 3-D film was Man Of Steel (2013), and Green Lantern had a 3-D film in Green Lantern (2011), which is not connected to the DC Extended Universe.
During the battle between the two heroes, "MCK" can be seen on a pillar in graffiti. These are the initials of Superman's adoptive Earth mother, Martha Clark Kent, making this a possible premonition to the revelation that ends their fight.
Throughout most of the film, Lex Luthor is seen with longish hair, a direct contrast to his traditional bald headed appearance. However, by the end of the film, Luthor's hair had been shaved off, showing him as bald, which plays as a throwback to Gene Hackman with the "Is it a wig, or is it a bald cap?" question.
After the nuclear blast, Superman is referred to as "Projectile 2". This is a remote reference to "P.R.O.J.E.C.T. 2" to All-Star Superman, which is a project dedicated to creating a second superman after Superman's death in the comics.
The film bears some similarities to the earlier Batman film The Dark Knight (2008): In both films, the main antagonists The Joker and Lex Luthor are bent on bringing down Harvey Dent and Superman. Both Harvey Dent and Lex Luthor kidnap Superman and Commissioner James Gordon's families to force them into a confrontation. In the aftermath of the final showdown between the protagonists and the antagonists, both The Joker and Lex Luthor are arrested. Both The Joker and Lex Luthor kill people in explosions. Like the interrogation scene between Batman and The Joker, the light goes out in Lex Luthor's prison cell and Batman appears and confronts Lex Luthor for what he has done, and both films end with the deaths of Harvey Dent and Superman.