Zack Synder really wanted to go all out on Batman v Superman.
In an interview with Collider, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice director Zack Snyder was asked how close he was to having The Joker in the film. Here is what he had to say:
The Joker and The Riddler both came close to being in this movie. We talked about the possibility of putting them in. [Screenwriter] Chris Terrio and I talked about it a lot and felt that their mythological presence is felt in the movie and that’s cool, but I didn’t want to get my eye too far off the ball because I needed to spend the time, frankly, with Batman and Superman to understand the conflict.
It’s interesting that at some point both of these villains were on the table for Batman v Superman, and while I’m excited to see Jared Leto’s take on the infamous villain, I’m glad this didn’t happen. Batman v Superman is already pretty stuffed as is, as it needs establish Batman, as well as Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Lex Luthor, and Doomsday. Adding two of Bat’s most famous villains would only over crowd things even more.
I’m curious to how exactly Snyder was planning on using these two villains however. Would they be shown through various flashbacks? Ben Affleck has confirmed that in this universe his Robin is already dead, so maybe they planned on flashing back to his death at the hands of the Joker? Now that would have been interesting. I hope we get to see this scene at some point in DC’s cinematic universe. Maybe in the inevitable Batfleck solo film?
So I see how The Joker could have made an appearance, but I’m confused on where The Riddler could have possibly fit into Batman v Superman. Unlike The Joker, The Riddler hasn’t had a live action appearance in over two decades in the dreadful Batman Forever. For general audiences, this would require more set up time to establish who and what The Riddler is.
One of my big takeaways from this is the fact that they were planning on using The Riddler at all. I think this gives us some heavy hints about who Batman will be facing in his solo films. I expect The Riddler will definitely make an appearance at some point, but only time will tell.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice opens March 25th