Warner Bros. has issued a statement tonight, appearing to push back publicly, for the first time, against some of the allegations that actor Ray Fisher has made about his treatment on the set of Joss Whedon’s Justice League. Fisher, who played Cyborg in the 2018 superhero movie, has stated that Whedon’s behavior on the set—which he took over after original director Zack Snyder departed the project—was “gross” and “abusive.” He’s also stated that producers Geoff Johns and Jon Berg (among others) enabled Whedon’s actions. Beyond those statements, though, Fisher has never gone into public detail about what Whedon is alleged to have done.
Things seemed to be going smoothly between the actor and the studio of late, with Fisher applauding Warner Bros. for bringing in a third-party investigator to look into his claims. Today, though, the studio has claimed that Fisher has repeatedly refused to meet with said investigator. A studio spokesperson also heavily implied that Fisher was mostly upset about his part being cut down in Whedon’s cut of the movie—not for nothing, but Snyder has been very vocal about the fact that Cyborg is the “heart” of his cut of the film—and alleging that at least some of the comments Fisher has recently made about current DC Films President Walter Hamada are false.
Here’s the statement in full:
In July, Ray Fisher’s representatives asked DC Films President Walter Hamada to talk to Mr. Fisher about his concerns during the production of Justice League. The two had previously spoken when Mr. Hamada asked him to reprise his role as Cyborg in Warner Bros.’ upcoming Flash movie, together with other members of the Justice League.
In their July conversation, Mr. Fisher recounted disagreements he’d had with the film’s creative team regarding his portrayal of Cyborg, and complained that his suggested script revisions were not adopted. Mr. Hamada explained that creative differences are a normal part of the production process, and that a film’s writer/director ultimately has to be in charge of these matters.
Notably, Mr. Hamada also told Mr. Fisher that he would elevate his concerns to WarnerMedia so they could conduct an investigation. At no time did Mr. Hamada ever “throw anyone under the bus,” as Mr. Fisher has falsely claimed, or render any judgments about the Justice League production, in which Mr. Hamada had no involvement, since filming occurred before Mr. Hamada was elevated to his current position.
While Mr. Fisher never alleged any actionable misconduct against him, WarnerMedia nonetheless initiated an investigation into the concerns he’d raised about his character’s portrayal. Still not satisfied, Mr. Fisher insisted that WarnerMedia hire an independent third party investigator.
This investigator has attempted multiple times to meet with Mr. Fisher to discuss his concerns but, to date, Mr. Fisher has declined to speak to the investigator. Warner Bros. remains committed to accountability and to the well-being of every cast and crew member on each of its productions. It also remains committed to investigating any specific and credible allegation of misconduct, which thus far Mr. Fisher has failed to provide.”
Warner Bros. was presumably moved to action by tweets Fisher issued today, in which he claimed that Hamada had “attempted to throw Joss Whedon and Jon Berg under the bus in hopes that I would relent on Geoff Johns.”
All of which suggests that this is going to get more messy, not less, as the time of the Snyder Cut’s 2021 release approaches. Certainly, Warner Bros.’ decision to issue this statement at 8 p.m. on a Friday night—the hour where press statements go to die in an unmarked grave—suggests a certain desire to make this all stay quiet that’s almost certainly not going to end up bearing fruit.