< >

View Lifecycle

Both View and CollectionView are aware of their lifecycle state which indicates if the view is rendered, attached to the DOM or destroyed.

Documentation Index

Lifecycle State Methods

Both View and CollectionView share methods for checking lifecycle state.


Returns a boolean value reflecting if the view is considered rendered.


Returns a boolean value reflecting if the view is considered attached to the DOM.


Returns a boolean value reflecting if the view has been destroyed.

Instantiating a View

Marionette Views are Backbone Views and so when they are instantiated the view has an el. That el will be the root node for the view and other than its contents it will not change for the life of the view unless directly manipulated (ie: view.$el.addClass)

The view can be passed an existing el either in the DOM (ie: el: $('.foo-selector')) or in memory (ie: el: $('<div></div>')) or most commonly, the view constructs its own el at instantiation as documented on backbonejs.org.

Marionette will determine the initial state of the view as to whether the view is considered already rendered or attached. If a view is already rendered or attached its state will reflect that status, but the related events will not have fired.

For more information on instanting a view with pre-rendered DOM see: Prerendered Content.

Using setElement

Backbone.View allows the user to change the view's el after instantiaton using setElement. This method can be used in Marionette as well, but should be done with caution. setElement will redelegate view events, but it will essentially ignore children of the view, whether through regions or through children and the view's behaviors will also be unaware of the change. It is likely better to reconstuct a new view with the new el than to try to change the el of an existing view.

Rendering a View

In Marionette rendering a view is changing a view's el's contents.

What rendering indicates varies slightly between the two Marionette views.

Note Once a view is considered "rendered" it cannot be unrendered until it is destroyed.

View Rendering

For View, rendering entails serializing the view's data, passing it to a template, and taking the results of that template and replacing the contents of the view's el. So when a View is instantiated it is considered rendered if the el node contains any content. However after instantiation a template may render empty in which case the View will still be considered "rendered" even though it contains no content.

CollectionView Rendering

For CollectionView, rendering signifies that the view's children were created and attached to the view's el. So unlike View a CollectionView can be instantiated with content in its el, but until the children are "rendered" the entire view is not considered rendered.

Notably if there are no children when rendering, the view will still be considered rendered. This is true whether or not an emptyView is rendered. So it is possible for a CollectionView to be "rendered" but the el to only be an empty tag. Also note that just like View a CollectionView may have a template which is rendered and attached to the el during the render, but the template rendering itself has no bearing on the status of the CollectionView.

Rendering Children

Rendering child views is often best accomplish after the view render as typically the first render happens prior to the view entering the DOM. This helps to prevent unnecessary repaints and reflows by making the DOM insert at the highest possible view in the view tree.

The exception is views with prerendered content. In the case that the view is instantiated rendered, child views are best managed in the view's initialize.

View Children

In general the best method for adding a child view to a View is to use showChildView in the render event.

View regions will be emptied on each render so views shown outside of the render event will still need be reshown on subsequent renders.

CollectionView Children

The primary use case for a CollectionView is maintaining child views to match the state of a Backbone Collection. By default children will be added or removed to match the models within the collection. However a CollectionView can have children in addition to, or instead of, views matching the collection.

Adding managed children

If you add a view to a CollectionViews children by default it will treat it as any other view added from the collection. This means it is subject to the viewComparator and viewFilter.

So if you are accounting for added views in your viewFilter and viewComparator the best place to add these children is likely in the render event as the views will only be added once (or re-added if the children are rebuilt in a subsequent render) and managed in the sort or filter as the collection is updated.

Adding unmanaged children

Unlike managed children there may be cases where you want to insert views to the results of the CollectionView after the collection changes, or after sorting and/or filtering. In these cases the solution might depend slightly on the features used on the CollectionView.

The goal will be to add the unmanaged views after other views are added and to remove any unmanaged views prior to any managed children changes. To do so you must understand which CollectionView event will occur prior to changes to the children for your particular use case. By default a CollectionView sorts according to the collection sort, so unless viewComparator is disabled, the best event for removing unmanaged views is the before:sort event, but if viewComparator is false the next event to consider is the before:filter event if your CollectionView has a viewFilter, otherwise the before:render:children event is ideal.

Once you have determined the best strategy for removing your unmanaged child views, adding them is best handled in the render:children event. Additionally adding a child with addChildView will itself cause these events to occur, so to prevent stack overflows, it is best to use a flag to guard the adds and to insert a new view at a specified index.

The following simplistic example will add an unmanaged view at the 5th index and remove it prior to any changes to the children. In a real world scenario it will likely be more complicated to keep track of which view to remove in the onBeforeSort.

import { CollectionView } from 'backbone.marionette';

const MyCollectionView = CollectionView.extend({
  childView: MyChildView,
  onBeforeSort() {
  onRenderChildren() {
  addFooView() {
    if (this.addingFooView) {

    this.addingFooView = true;
    this.addChildView(new FooView(), 5);
    this.addingFooView = false;

Attaching a View

In Marionette a view is attached if the view's el can be found in the DOM. The best time to add listeners to the view's el is likely in the attach event.

While the el of the view can be attached the contents of the view can be removed and added to during the lifetime of the view. If you are adding listeners to the contents of the view rather than attach the dom:refresh event would be best.

The attached state is maintained when attaching a view with a Region or as a child of a CollectionView or during view instantiation. If a view is attached by other means like $.append [isAttached] may not reflect the actual state of attachment.

Detaching a View

A view is detached when its el is removed from the DOM. The best time to clean up any listeners added to the el is in the before:detach event.

While the el of the view may remain attached, its contents will be removed on render. If you have added listeners to the contents of the view rather than before:detach the dom:remove event would be best.

Destroying a View

Destroying a view (ie: myView.destroy()) cleans up anything constucted within Marionette so that if a view's instance is no longer referenced the view can be cleaned up by the browser's garbage collector.

The before:destroy event is the best place to clean up any added listeners not related to the view's DOM.

The state of the view after the destroy is not attached and not rendered although the el is not emptied.

Destroying Children

Children added to a View's region or through a CollectionView will be automatically destroyed if the view is re-rendered, if the view is destroyed, or for CollectionView if the collection is reset.

Note Children are removed after the DOM detach of the parent to prevent multiple reflows or repaints.

Improve this page