You wouldn't have thought that a mustache would be the hot topic of conversation surrounding Justice League, but that's just where we are right now. Henry Cavill grew a mustache for his role in Mission: Impossible 6, and was not allowed to shave it when he returned to Justice League for reshoots. Thus, the VFX team had to remove the 'stache, resulting in Superman having a wonky CGI face for most of the movie. Mustachegate is real, and now a VFX artist familiar with the situation revealed on Reddit why Cavill wasn't allowed just to shave. When asked what the team's reaction was to the mustache news, the Redditor said:
To some people it's a cool little project to get stuck in to and another problem to solve, which is what a lot of VFX is about. Challenging. To me, as a fan, I was annoyed haha Paramount should've shaved him and stuck a fake one on for MI6. Ridiculously petty of them. We did tests on already shot footage of Superman to add a beard as well to show the MI6 team at Paramount it was loads easier, and Warner Bros offered to pay for all the beard adding shots in MI6. They said no.)
After wrapping principal photography for Justice League, Henry Cavill began growing a mustache for his role in Paramount's Mission: Impossible 6. Sometime down the line, Cavill is needed back at Warner Bros. to film some major reshoots for Justice League under Joss Whedon. However, Cavill wasn't allowed to shave his honking mustache, and the VFX team had to remove and rebuild parts of the actors face in a short amount of time. It looked bad, has been the subject of a ton of jokes and memes, and according to a VFX artist, it all could have been avoided.
Taking to Reddit for an AMA, a VFX artist familiar with the situation (He worked on Wonder Woman and Aquaman, but was in the room for Justice League) revealed that it would have been much easier and better looking to give Cavill a CGI mustache for MI6 then it would be to rebuild his actual face. But Paramount said no, even after being shown a sample of how seamless it would have looked. Warner Bros. reportedly even offered to pay for the whole thing. Still, Paramount said no, opting to keep Cavill's face hairy at all times.
The VFX artist also revealed some interesting information about the logistics of VFX work. Apparently, if Warner Bros. had pushed back the release date, they could have made the mustache removal look seamless, but they just weren't given the time. It's also easier to create an underwater beard for Aquaman than it is to rebuild a human face. The Redditor also comments on the demand for a "Zack Snyder-cut" of Justice League, writing that it won't happen. MAYBE an extended cut of the current version, but he doesn't believe it's likely anymore.
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The plot -- but not the hair -- certainly thickens for Mustachegate. You can check out Superman's wonky face in Justice League, out in theaters right now.