Most notably, Phil Lord and Chris Miller, hot off the success of The LEGO Movie, left Flash to helm Solo: A Star Wars Story (which in turn had its own share of problems.) Rick Famuyiwa (Dope) was set to replace them, but also dropped out of the project. John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein, the writers behind Spider-Man: Homecoming, are currently set to direct the film, which has been pushed back to 2021 at the earliest. Cyborg is still officially on the docket for 2020, but it still doesn't have a director attached.
Complicating matters even further for the Snyder universe was the surprising crossover success of two other entries in the universe: Wonder Woman and Aquaman. Wonder Woman proved to be a cultural sensation, helping turn Gal Gadot into a full-blown star and the film into a critical hit. Aquaman was met with more mixed reviews, but has proven to be a global success. The film even managed to earn more than the Academy Award-winning Dark Knight, becoming one of the most successful DC films ever released. The DCEU finally had some unabashed wins under its belt, and Warner Bros. was willing to shift their plans to accommodate those successes.
Where We Are Now
Sequels to Wonder Woman and Aquaman, which weren't part of the original plan, were quickly put into development. The proposed sequel to Suicide Squad has morphed into two separate films, the James Gunn-directed follow-up and the Harley Quinn-centric Birds of Prey. More offbeat fare like the Todd Phillips-directed Joker have also been brought onto the docket. Only Shazam! has remained the same from the original plans for 2019.
Meanwhile, Snyder is no longer at Warner Bros. Ben Affleck has stepped down from the Batman role, leaving the Matt Reeves (War for the Planet of the Apes) to construct his own specific take on the character. Henry Cavill has seemingly left the part of Superman, and speculation suggests that Warner Bros. is more invested in turning Supergirl into a movie star instead. Flash almost became Flashpoint, and even that seems to have been scrapped in lieu of something different. Green Lantern Corps still hasn't attached a director.
Throughout all of this, Snyder has been extremely open about what he wishes the franchise could have been. He even revealed a design over social media that seems to be the overarching map of his vision for the DCEU. If the Snyder DCEU had survived, we'd have a completely different (and arguably less exciting) DC Universe. One where everything is part of a single overall story, where interesting but standalone stories wouldn't have room to exist.
In the world Snyder envisioned, we'd be seeing Flash alongside Shazam, and more of Henry Cavill as Superman. Wonder Woman and Aquaman wouldn't be headlining their own franchises, and would be more tied to the Justice League. The film slate wouldn't be as diverse as it has become. Films as experimental as Birds of Prey or The Joker probably wouldn't exist at all.
While it's sad that Snyder never got to see his version of the DCEU become a reality, it may be a blessing in disguise. Instead, we have the diverse and strange slate of DC films that could finally help DC stand out from the MCU.