Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Truth About The Canisters In Zack Snyder's Army Of The Dead First-Look

Like so many movies originally set for release in 2020, Zack Snyder's Army of the Dead was pushed to 2021 — but it was most certainly not forgotten. The Dave Bautista-starring film not only marks a return for Snyder to the director's chair, it's also his return to the world of zombies for the first time since his 2004 Dawn of the Dead remake. While Snyder was filming Army of the Dead back in the summer of 2019, he was also entrenched in a campaign to see his own cut of Justice League released into the world. As it turns out, you can see visual evidence of Snyder's efforts in Army of the Dead.

A lot can change in the world when there's an apocalyptic zombie event. Las Vegas is locked down and becomes a quarantine zone in Army of the Dead, for example. In the zombie/heist film, Bautista's character assembles a team to sneak into his casino and access the treasures in one of his vaults.

In 2019, there was another treasure hidden in a vault — Zack Snyder's unused footage from Justice League. It has become clear over the years that the theatrical cut of the film was not what Snyder nor his cast intended or wanted. Here in 2021, we know that something similar to Snyder's vision will be seen on HBO Max in the form of a Justice League mini-series.

However, back in 2019, it didn't seem particularly likely that Snyder's vision would ever see the light of day. While working on Army of the Dead, Snyder found a sneaky way to make sure his version of Justice League would be "seen" in a manner of speaking — by literally putting it in Army of the Dead.

Army of the Dead was nearly the only way to see the Snyder Cut

With Snyder's cut of Justice League effectively in the can and speedily on its way to a March 2021 release on HBO Max, Snyder is free to start promoting Army of the Dead a little more. On January 6, 2021, Snyder fans got their first look at official images from the zombie movie in an exclusive from Entertainment Weekly. Included in those images is one of the cast excitedly peering into the entrance of a vault.

We have no idea if this is the specific vault Bautista's character is after, but we can see that its contents are potentially valuable — assuming there's still a traditional economy of any kind in the zombie apocalypse. There appears to be some weaponry in the corner, there's enough paper money to swim around in Scrooge McDuck style, and there's also one other thing in the vault — canisters. And they're not just any canisters, they're film canisters. 

Back in December 2019, Snyder shared a photo online with film canisters whose label read "JL DIRECTORS CUT." Over the image Snyder wrote, "Is it real? Does it exist? Of course it does." Eagle-eyed fans looked at the film canisters in the vaults of Army of the Dead and noticed that they seem to have identical labels. So while some people might seek money in a zombie apocalypse, it's clear what two things Snyder values at the end times — his vision of Justice League, and its fans.

For all Snyder knew in 2019, Army of the Dead was the closest anyone would ever get to seeing his director's cut of Justice League. Now we'll both see the film and its canisters in a fun Easter egg when Army of the Dead bows later in 2021.