Zack Snyder's film adaptation of the acclaimed graphic novel Watchmen has certainly undergone some legal bumps in its journey to the big screen, but ever since the release of the film's teaser trailer, fans have consoled themselves with one silver lining: the movie looks like a frame-by-frame recreation of Alan Moore's original work (albeit with more of Snyder's signature, 300-honed slow-mo). So, imagine our surprise as word leaked out from a super-secret Watchmen test screening that Snyder had incurred fanboy death threats by changing Moore's iconic ending! Spoilers below, natch:
In the original ending, sociopathic superhero Adrian Veidt attempts to avert nuclear hostilities between the U.S. and Russia by giving both countries a common enemy: a giant, psychic squid (drawn by artists who Veidt has kidnapped, then created using Veidt's powers) which Veidt will warp into New York City, creating death and carnage. If it sounds a bit silly to describe, Snyder must have had the same instincts, since word is that the squid has been scrapped entirely. Instead, Snyder's Veidt (played by Matthew Goode) uses a machine he has invented to stud cities around the world with explosions, framing the deed on one of his fellow watchmen: Dr. Manhattan (Billy Crudup). The chilly Manhattan is weirdly OK with that idea, but then, Manhattan is kind of weirdly OK about everything. Should Snyder invest in some beefed-up security, or will audiences be too exhausted by the film's nearly three-hour running time to care what happens at the end? We're tentatively on board with the change (frankly, we always felt that there were a few problems with the last act of Watchmen), but we'd advise Snyder to keep an eye out for masked vigilantes.