Zack Snyder’s Star Wars Knock-Off Is Too Big

Zack Snyder's Rebel Moon is going to be two movies now.

By Chris Snellgrove | Published

Zack Snyder Rebel Moon

Netflix is keen to expand its library of original content in an effort to keep people streaming from their platform rather than rivals, and one of the projects on the horizon is Zack Snyder’s Rebel Moon, a kind of sci-fi two-movie epic with more than a little shared DNA with Star Wars. Recently, Netflix executives sat down for an interview with Variety, and Ori Murmur was asked what gave the studio the confidence to make two different Snyder films back-to-back. Murmur responded by saying the divisive director “came in with so much passion” and that he’s been wanting to create the movie “for decades,” finally concluding that with “how big the world he created was, we thought it would be better served as two pieces versus one film,” with the hope of growing this into a full franchise.

Another reason that Netflix executives feel confident giving Zack Synder two films to bring Rebel Moon to life is that he has an established track record for the streaming service. He previously directed Army of the Dead, a zombie movie that was a hit with critics and audiences alike. That movie was successful enough to merit a spin-off prequel named Army of Thieves, and Netflix has more content for this IP (including both a proper sequel to the first movie called Planet of the Dead and even an anime-inspired series with the cool subtitle Lost Vegas). 

rebel moon netflix
Rebel Moon

The director was a hot commodity, especially after the successful release of his much-demanded “Snyder Cut” of Justice League, and Netflix didn’t waste any time leaning into their business relationship with him. In the company’s eyes, Zack Snyder has already delivered them one successful original franchise, and they are hoping he will do so again with Rebel Moon. The fact that this is Snyder’s attempt to do his own Star Wars kind of story also means that Netflix will be better able to compete with Disney+, a major business rival whose library of original content (much of it centered around popular Star Wars and MCU characters) only continues to grow.

And at this point, Netflix is likely rooting for the success of Zack Snyder’s Rebel Moon even more than the director is. Last April, the streaming service reported that it lost subscribers for the first time ever, causing the company to lose billions of dollars in market value. This resulted in nasty layoffs that affected the content they created, and the company now even cracks down on users sharing their Netflix accounts with friends and family (something it once encouraged).

There are so many streaming rivals now that Netflix can’t boast the extensive back catalog it once had, meaning the only way to both bring in new subscribers and keep them is to create more original content. Zack Snyder has experience both bringing other successful IPs to life (such as Man of Steel and Justice League) and experience bringing his own original IPs to streaming (like Army of Thieves), so Netflix is hoping the veteran director’s Rebel Moon will be a major hit when they need it the most. However, whether this movie or any other bit of original content is enough to keep the beleaguered Netflix attractive to subscribers remains to be seen.