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Why The Music In The Snyder Cut Sounds So Different

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In case you hadn't noticed, there are a lot of differences between the original theatrical release of Justice League and HBO Max's newly extended version. Zack Snyder's Justice League features new characters, expanded backstories and plotlines, and a lot more violence. In short, it's everything fans who waited years for the Snyder Cut had been hoping for.

Beyond the added visual and narrative elements, though, there are other huge changes between Joss Whedon and Zack Snyder's versions of Justice League. One of the most notable is the film's score — because it's completely different. Danny Elfman, noted for his work for films like The Nightmare Before Christmas and the first Batman film, composed the music for the 2017 film. But Junkie XL, a.k.a. Tom Holkenborg, stepped in to bring a different dramatic flair to Zack Snyder's extended cut of Justice League. The difference is not hard to miss — the composer, best known for his work on films like Mad Max: Fury Road and Deadpool, wrote a score that reflects the added grandeur and scale of the updated version.

It turns out, there's a significant reason why the Dutch composer wound up taking the reins for the Snyder Cut. Let's take a look at the history between Zack Snyder and Junkie XL and find out why the music for the new version of the film is so much different.

Junkie XL came back to make the music for the Snyder Cut

Back when Justice League was in Zack Snyder's hands the first time, the plan was for Junkie XL to create the score. After the director stepped away due to a personal family crisis, the original plans for the score were scrapped — and so, too, was Holkenborg's participation (via NPR). It's easy to see why the director chose for him to come back aboard when HBO Max commissioned the Snyder Cut — the two already had a history, with Holkenborg co-composing the score for Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice with his mentor Hans Zimmer (via Billboard). And he, too, had unfinished business with the film.

Holkenborg actually created a whole new score for Justice League, despite having already created themes for it several years ago with Zimmer. He felt as though his original work on the score didn't reflect his current mindset or skills as an artist (via ScreenRant). The result is four hours of music that blends rock and roll, synthesizers, dramatic orchestral cues, and haunting vocals. While it differs radically from Elfman's version, many agree the new score fits perfectly with Zack Snyder's vision for Justice League.