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Superman in film - Wikipedia In 1973, producer Ilya Salkind convinced his father Alexander to buy the rights to Superman. They hired Mario Puzo to pen a two-film script, and negotiated with ...
Superman in film - Wikipedia The fictional character Superman an American comic book superhero in DC Comics publications has appeared in movies almost since his inception The Pay Off He debuted in cinemas in a series of animated shorts beginning in 1941 and then starred in two movie serials in 1948 and 1950 An independent studio Lippert Pictures released the first Superman feature film Superman and the Mole Men starring George Reeves in 1951 Ilya and Alexander Salkind and Pierre Spengler purchased the Superman film rights in 1974 After numerous scripts Richard Donner was hired to direct the film filming Superman 1978 and Superman II 1980 simultaneously Donner had already shot eighty percent of Superman II with Christopher Reeve before it was decided to finish shooting the first film The Salkinds fired Donner after Supermans release and commissioned Richard Lester as the director to finish Superman II Lester also returned for Superman III 1983 and the Salkinds further produced the 1984 spinoff Supergirl before selling the rights to Cannon Films resulting in the critically panned Superman IV The Quest for Peace 1987 Ilya Salkind commissioned a fifth Superman script before Warner Bros acquired the rights entirely in 1993 Over the course of eleven years Warner Bros would develop and then cancel Tim Burtons Superman Lives which would have starred Nicolas Cage Wolfgang Petersens Batman vs Superman and the J J Abrams scripted Superman Flyby which went between directors Joseph McG Nichols and Brett Ratner The studio hired Bryan Singer to take over the franchise in 2004 releasing Superman Returns in 2006 which starred newcomer Brandon Routh Donners directors cut for Superman II was also released that year Despite positive reviews Warner Bros was disappointed with the financial performance of Superman Returns and canceled Singers proposed sequel The studio nearly went in production of a Justice League film with George Miller directing and D J Cotrona as Superman but it was shelved in 2008 and the film series was rebooted in 2013 with Man of Steel directed by Zack Snyder and produced by Christopher Nolan with Henry Cavill starring as Superman Snyder Nolan and Cavill worked together again in Batman v Superman Dawn of Justice Contents 1 Films 2 Early films and serials 2 1 Paramount cartoon shorts 2 2 Film serials 2 3 Superman and the Mole Men 1951 3 Christopher Reeve series 1978–1987 3 1 Superman 1978 3 2 Superman II 1980 3 3 Superman III 1983 3 4 Supergirl spinoff film 1984 3 5 Superman IV The Quest for Peace 1987 4 Abandoned projects 4 1 Superman V 4 2 Superman Reborn 4 3 Superman Lives 4 4 Superman vs Batman 2001–2002 4 5 Superman Flyby 5 Superman Returns 2006 6 DC Extended Universe 6 1 Man of Steel 2013 6 2 Batman v Superman Dawn of Justice 2016 6 3 Justice League 2017 6 4 Untitled Man of Steel sequel TBA 7 Characters 7 1 Recurring characters 7 2 Nonrecurring characters 8 Reception 8 1 Box office performance 8 2 Critical and public response 9 Franchise collections 10 See also 11 References Early films and serialsedit Paramount cartoon shortsedit Main article Superman 1940s cartoons Superman first appeared in cinemas in a series of 17 theatrical animated shorts from between 1941 and 1943 They were released by Paramount Pictures Of those seventeen nine were produced by Fleischer Studios and further eight by its successor Famous Studios Film serialsedit The first appearances of Superman in liveaction film were in two serials for Columbia Pictures Superman in 1948 and Atom Man vs Superman in 1950 both starring Kirk Alyn and Noel Neill Superman and the Mole Men 1951edit Main article Superman and the Mole Men Superman and the Mole Men is a 1951 superhero film starring George Reeves as Superman and Phyllis Coates as Lois Lane The film was produced by Barney Sarecky and directed by Lee Sholem with the original screenplay by Richard Fielding a pseudonym for Robert Maxwell and Whitney Ellsworth Shot on a low budget it served as a trial run for the syndicated TV series Adventures of Superman for which it became a pilot twopart episode titled The Unknown People 1 Christopher Reeve series 1978–1987edit Superman 1978edit Main article Superman 1978 film In 1973 producer Ilya Salkind convinced his father Alexander to buy the rights to Superman They hired Mario Puzo to pen a twofilm script and negotiated with Steven Spielberg to direct though Alexander Salkind rejected him as Jaws went over budget 2Marlon Brando and Gene Hackman signed on to play JorEl and Lex Luthor respectively and Guy Hamilton was hired to direct However Brando was faced with an obscenity lawsuit in Italy over Last Tango in Paris and Hamilton was unable to shoot in England as he had violated his tax payments The Salkinds hired Richard Donner to direct the film Donner hired Tom Mankiewicz to polish the script giving it a serious feel with Christlike overtones 3Christopher Reeve was cast as Superman having initially failed to impress the Salkinds before bulking up 2 Brando meanwhile despite spending less than two weeks on the shoot2 and not even reading the script until then3 earned 3 7 million up front plus 11 75 of the gross profits from the film 2 The film was a success both critically and commercially being released during the Christmas season of 1978 it did not have much competition leading the producers to believe that this was one factor in the films success 4 Superman II 1980edit Main articles Superman II and Superman II The Richard Donner Cut Shooting of the two films was marred by Donners bad relationship with the Salkinds with Richard Lester acting as mediator 3 With the film going overbudget the filmmakers decided to temporarily cease production of II and move that films climax into the first film 23 Despite Supermans success Donner did not return to finish Superman II3 and it was completed with Lester who gave the film a more tongueincheek tone The Salkinds also cut Brando for financial reasons2 while John Williams quit as composer due to turning his attention to other projects 2Superman II was another financial and critical success despite stiff competition with Raiders of the Lost Ark in the same year In 2006 after receiving many requests for his own version of Superman II Richard Donner and producer Michael Thau produced their own cut of the film and released it on November 28 2006 The new version of the film received positive response from critics5 and the stars of the original film Superman III 1983edit Main article Superman III For the third installment Ilya Salkind wrote a treatment that expanded the films scope to a cosmic scale introducing the villains Brainiac and Mister Mxyzptlk as well as Supergirl 3 The original outline featured a fatherdaughter relationship between Brainiac and Supergirl and a romance between Superman and Supergirl even though the two are cousins in the comics 6 Warner Bros rejected it and created their own Superman III film that costarred Richard Pryor as computer wizard Gus Gorman who under the manipulation of a millionaire magnate creates a form of Kryptonite that turns the Man of Steel into an evil self The retooled script3 pared Brainiac down into the films evil ultimate computer 2 Despite the films success fans were disappointed with the film in particular with Pryors performance diluting the serious tone of the previous films as well as controversy over the depiction of the evil Superman 3 Salkinds rejected proposal was later released online in 2007 3 Supergirl spinoff film 1984edit Main article Supergirl film Upon gaining the rights for the film Superman Alexander Salkind and his son Ilya Salkind also purchased the rights to the character of Supermans cousin Supergirl 7Supergirl was released in 1984 as a spinoff of the Reeve films Reeve was slated to have a cameo but he ultimately backed out of the production 8 It stars Helen Slater in her first motion picture in the title role while Faye Dunaway who received top billing played the primary villain Selena the film also featured Marc McClure reprising his role as Jimmy Olsen 9 Even though the film performed poorly at the box office10Helen Slater was nominated for a Saturn Award 11 Superman IV The Quest for Peace 1987edit Main article Superman IV The Quest for Peace Cannon Films picked up an option for a fourth SupermanReeve film with Reeve reprising the role due to his interest in the films topic regarding nuclear weapons However Cannon decided to cut the budget of Superman IV The Quest for Peace from 35 million to 15 million with poor special effects and heavy reediting which contributed to the films poor reception 3 Warner Bros decided to give the franchise a break following the negative reception of the last two Superman films 3 Abandoned projectsedit Superman Vedit Before the failure of Superman IV The Quest for Peace Cannon Films considered producing a fifth film with Albert Pyun as director Cannons bankruptcy resulted in the film rights reverting to Ilya and Alexander Salkind 12 Ilya Salkind wrote the story for Superman V also known as Superman The New Movie with Superboy writers Cary Bates and Mark Jones in the early1990s 2 The story had Superman dying and resurrecting in the shrunken bottled Krypton city of Kandor The premise of Supermans death and rebirth coincidentally predated The Death of Superman Salkind Bates and Jones developed two drafts of the script with Christopher Reeve set to reprise the title role 2 Superman Rebornedit In any good Superman movie the fate of the whole planet should be at stake Youve got to have villains whose powers and abilities demand that Superman and only Superman can be the one who stops them Thats the only way to make the movie exciting and a dramatic challenge Writer Jonathan Lemkin on writing Superman Reborn13188 With the success of The Death of Superman comic book storyline Warner Bros purchased the film rights of Superman from the Salkinds in 1993 and hired producer Jon Peters to develop a new Superman film Peters in turn hired Jonathan Lemkin to write a new script 13188 Major toy companies insisted on seeing Lemkins screenplay before the deadline of the 1993 American International Toy Fair 13188 Lemkins script titled Superman Reborn featured Lois Lane and Clark Kent with relationship troubles and Supermans battle with Doomsday When Superman professes his love to Lois his life force jumps between them just as he dies giving Lois a virgin birth Their child who grows 21yearsold in three weeks becomes the resurrected Superman and saves the world 13188–189 Warner Bros did not like the script because of the similar underlying themes with Bruce Waynes obligations of heroism found in Batman Forever 1318914 Peters hired Gregory Poirier to rewrite the script 13189 Poirers December 1995 script had Brainiac creating Doomsday infused with Kryptonite blood Superman has romance problems with Lois Lane and visits a psychiatrist before he is killed by Doomsday An alien named Cadmus a victim of Brainiac steals his corpse Superman is resurrected and teams with Cadmus to defeat Brainiac Powerless Superman wears a robotic suit until his powers which according to the script are a mental discipline called Phinyar return 13189 At Peters request Poirier had Superman wear an allblack suit at the end of the script 13189 Other villains included Parasite and Silver Banshee 12 Poiriers script impressed Warner Bros 14 but Kevin Smith was hired to rewrite 15 Smith thought that Poiriers script did not respect the Superman mythos properly 13189 Superman Livesedit See also The Death of Superman Lives What Happened Kevin Smith pitched Peters his story outline in late 1996 and was allowed to write the screenplay under certain conditions 13 Peters did not want Superman to fly13190 arguing that Superman would look like an overgrown Boy Scout 12 Smith wrote Superman flying as a redandblue blur in flight creating a sonic boom every time he flew 16 Peters also wanted Superman to fight a giant spider in the third act 13190 Smith accepted the terms realizing that he was being hired to execute a preordained idea 13190 Smith was also forced to write a scene involving Brainiac fighting a polar bear at the Fortress of Solitude 13190 The Star Wars 20th anniversary rerelease in theaters also prompted Peters to commission a space dog that Brainiac could present to Luthor purely for merchandising appeal and toy sales 15 Peters also insisted that Brainiacs robot assistant LRon was to be voiced by Dwight Ewell calling the character a gay R2D2 with attitude 15 Smiths script titled Superman Lives had Brainiac sending Doomsday to kill Superman as well as blocking out the sun to make Superman powerless as Superman is fueled by sunlight Brainiac teams up with Lex Luthor but Superman is resurrected by a Kryptonian robot the Eradicator Brainiac wishes to possess the Eradicator and its technology Powerless the resurrected Superman is sheathed in a robotic suit formed from the Eradicator itself until his powers return courtesy of sunbeams and defeats Brainiac 16 Smiths casting choices included Ben Affleck as Clark KentSuperman Linda Fiorentino as Lois Lane Jack Nicholson as Lex Luthor Famke Janssen as Mercy John Mahoney as Perry White David Hyde Pierce as the Eradicator Jason Lee as Brainiac and Jason Mewes as Jimmy Olsen 17 Robert Rodriguez was offered the chance to direct but turned down the offer due to his commitment on The Faculty despite liking Smiths script 13191 Smith originally suggested Tim Burton to direct his script15 and Burton signed on with a payorplay contract of 5 million Warner Bros originally planned on a theatrical release date for summer 1998 the 60th anniversary of the characters debut in Action Comics 14Nicolas Cage a comic book fan signed on as Superman with a 20 million payorplay contract believing he could reconceive the character 13192 Peters felt Cage could convince audiences he Superman came from outer space 18 Burton explained Cages casting would be the first time you would believe that nobody could recognize Clark Kent as Superman he Cage could physically change his persona 19Kevin Spacey was approached for the role of Lex Luthor19 while Christopher Walken was Burtons choice for Brainiac20 a role also considered for Jim Carrey and Gary Oldman 21Sandra Bullock Courteney Cox and Julianne Moore had been approached for Lois Lane while Chris Rock was cast as Jimmy Olsen 20Michael Keaton confirmed his involvement but when asked if he would be reprising his role as Batman from Burtons Batman films he would only reply Not exactly 22 Filming was originally set to begin in early 1998 23 In the summer of 1997 Superman Lives entered preproduction13193 with an art department employed under production designer Rick Heinrichs 19 Burton hired Wesley Strick to rewrite Smiths script Smith was disappointed stating The studio was happy with what I was doing Then Tim Burton got involved and when he signed his payorplay deal he turned around and said he wanted to do his version of Superman So who is Warner Bros going back to The guy who made Clerks or the guy who made them half a billion dollars on Batman13193 When Strick read Smiths script he was annoyed with the fact that Superman was accompaniedshadowed by someonesomething called the Eradicator 13193 He also felt that Brainiacs evil plot of launching a disk in space to block out the sun and make Superman powerless was reminiscent of an episode of The Simpsons with Mr Burns doing the Brainiac role 13193 However after reading The Death and Return of Superman Strick was able to understand some of the elements of Smiths script Stricks rewrite featured Superman as an existentialist thinking of himself to be an outsider on Earth Superman is threatened by Brainiac and Lex Luthor who later amalgamate into Lexiac described by Strick as a schizoscary megavillain 13193 Superman is later resurrected by the power of K a natural force representing the spirit of Krypton as he defeats Lexiac 13193 Art designer Sylvain Despretz claimed the art department was assigned to create something that had little or nothing to do with the Superman comic book and also explained that Peters would bring kids in who would rate the drawings on the wall as if they were evaluating the toy possibilities It was basically a toy show 13196 Peters saw a cover of National Geographic containing a picture of a skull going to art department workers telling them he wanted the design for Brainiacs space ship to have the same image Burton gave Despretz a concept drawing for Brainiac which Despretz claims was a cone with a round ball on top and something that looked like an emaciated skull inside Imagine you take Merlins hat and you stick a fish bowl on top with a skull in it 13196 Concept artist Rolf Mohr said in an interview he designed a suit for the Eradicator for a planned scene in which it transforms into a flying vehicle 24 We got the Kevin Smith script but we were told not to read it because they knew he wasnt going to stay on the movie So we used Kevin Smiths script as a guide to the sets we might be doing and we waited and waited for the new script to come in but it never did Art designer Sylvain Despretz on designing Superman Lives13194 Burton chose Pittsburgh Pennsylvania as his primary filming location for Metropolis13197 while start dates for filming were pushed back 14 A minor piece of the Krypton set was constructed but then destroyed and Cage had even attended a costume fitting 25 The studio was also considering changing the title Superman Lives back to Superman Reborn 26 Deeming Wesley Stricks script too expensive Warner Bros enlisted the help of Dan Gilroy to rewrite it into something more economically feasible Gilroy lowered the 190 million budget set by Stricks draft to 100 million However the studio was still less willing to fast track production due to financial reasons with other film properties27 having Gilroy turn in two drafts 28 Ultimately Warner Bros chose to put the film on hold in April 1998 and Burton left to direct Sleepy Hollow 14 At this point in production Warner Bros had spent 30 million on developing the film 13198 Burton citing various differences with Peters and the studio said I basically wasted a year A year is a long time to be working with somebody that you dont really want to be working with 29 Disappointed by the lack of progress on the films production aspiring screenwritercomic book fan Alex Ford was able to have a script of his titled Superman The Man of Steel accepted at the studios offices in September 1998 Ford pitched his idea for a film series consisting of seven installments and his approach impressed Warner Bros and Peters though he was later given a farewell due to creative differences 12 Ford said I can tell you they dont know much about comics Their audience isnt you and me who pay 7 00 Its for the parents who spend 60 on toys and lunchboxes It is a business and whats more important the 150 million at the box office or the 600 million in merchandising28 With Gilroys script Peters offered the directors position to Michael Bay Shekhar Kapur and Martin Campbell though they all turned down the offer 12Brett Ratner turned down the option in favor of The Family Man 30Simon West and Stephen Norrington were reportedly top contenders as well 31 In June 1999 William Wisher Jr was hired to write a new script and Cage assisted on story elements 32 Cage dropped out of the project in June 200033 while Wisher turned in a new script in August 2000 reported to have contained similar elements with The Matrix 12Oliver Stone was then approached to direct Wishers script but declined 12 Peters offered Will Smith the role of Superman but the actor turned it down over ethnicity concerns 34 The films backstory was covered in the 2015 documentary film The Death of Superman Lives What Happened 3536 Kevin Smith directed the ninth episode of the second season of Supergirl which was titled Supergirl Lives as homage to Superman Lives 37 Superman vs Batman 2001–2002edit Although it was widely reported that McG had become attached to Attanasios script in February 2002 J J Abrams was hired to write a new screenplay It would ignore The Death of Superman storyline and instead it would reboot the film series with an origin story38 going under the title of Superman Flyby 12 The project had gone as far as being greenlit but McG dropped out in favor of Charlies Angels Full Throttle 39 The studio approached Wolfgang Petersen to direct Abrams script40 however in August 200141Andrew Kevin Walker pitched Warner Bros an idea titled Batman vs Superman attaching Petersen as director Abrams script was put on hold40 while Akiva Goldsman was hired to rewrite Walkers draft which was codenamed Asylum 42 Goldsmans draft43 dated June 21 2002 introduced Bruce Wayne attempting to shake all of the demons in his life after his fiveyear retirement from crimefighting Dick Grayson Alfred Pennyworth and Commissioner Gordon are all dead Meanwhile Clark Kent is down on his luck and in despair after his divorce from Lois Lane Clark serves as Bruces best man at his wedding to the beautiful and lovely Elizabeth Miller After Elizabeth is killed by the Joker at the honeymoon Bruce is forced to don the Batsuit once more tangling a plot which involves Lex Luthor while Clark begins a romance with Lana Lang in Smallville and tries to pull Bruce back In return Bruce blames Clark for her death and the two go against one another Part of the script took place in Smallville where Clark goes into exile with Lana Lang However Lex Luthor is held to be responsible for the entire plot of Batman and Superman destroying each other The two decide to team up and stop Luthor 44Christian Bale who was being considered for the lead in Darren Aronofskys Batman Year One adaptation at the time45 was simultaneously approached by Peterson for the Superman role Peterson confirmed in a 2010 interview the only other actor he approached for Superman was Josh Hartnett 46 Warner Bros canceled development to focus on individual Superman and Batman projects after Abrams submitted another draft for Superman Flyby 42Christopher Nolan would later cast Bale as Batman the following year in Batman Begins In the opening scene of I Am Legend a large banner displays the Superman symbol within the Batman symbol in Times Square It is meant as an injoke by writer Akiva Goldsman who wrote scripts for Batman vs Superman and I Am Legend 47 Superman Flybyedit Turning in his script in July 2002 J J Abrams Superman Flyby was an origin story that included Krypton besieged by a civil war between JorEl and his corrupt brother KataZor Before KataZor sentences JorEl to prison KalEl is launched to Earth to fulfill a prophecy Adopted by Jonathan and Martha Kent he forms a romance with Lois Lane in the Daily Planet However Lois is more concerned with exposing Lex Luthor written as a government agent obsessed with UFO phenomena Clark reveals himself to the world as Superman bringing KataZors son TyZor and three other Kryptonians to Earth Superman is defeated and killed and visits JorEl who committed suicide on Krypton while in prison in Kryptonian heaven Resurrected he returns to Earth and defeats the four Kryptonians The script ends with Superman flying off to Krypton in a spaceship 12 Brett Ratner was hired to direct in September 2002 originally expressing an interest in casting an unknown for the lead role while filming was to start sometime in late 2003 48Christopher Reeve joined as project consultant citing Tom Welling who portrayed the teenage Clark Kent in Smallville as an ideal candidate Reeve added the character is more important than the actor who plays him because it is an enduring mythology It definitely should be an unknown 49 Ratner approached Josh Hartnett Jude Law Paul Walker and Brendan Fraser for Superman but conceded that finding a famous actor for the title role had proven difficult because of contractual obligations to appear in sequels No star wants to sign that but as much as Ive told Jude and Josh my vision for the movie Ive warned them of the consequences of being Superman Theyll live this character for 10 years because Im telling one story over three movies and plan to direct all three if the first is as successful as everyone suspects 50 Hartnett in particular was offered 100 million for a threepicture deal 51 Walker explained that I could have made a gazillion dollars on that franchise I could probably have bought my own fleet of jets or my own island You know what I dont need it 52David Boreanaz Victor Webster53 and Ashton Kutcher auditioned along with Keri Russell as Lois Lane54 but Kutcher decided not to pursue the role citing scheduling conflicts with That 70s Show the Superman curse and fear of typecasting55 while Boreanaz had to back out due to obligations with Angel 53James Marsden stated in a 2006 interview that at one point he was approached by Ratner 56 Although it was never formally announced Matt Bomer confirmed he was in the running for the lead role being Ratners preferred choice at the time Bomer would later voice the character in the 2013 animated film Superman Unbound 57Amy Adams had also auditioned for Lois Lane and would eventually win the role eight years later when she was cast in Man of Steel 58 Superman Flyby was being met with a budget exceeding 200 million not including money spent on Superman Reborn Superman Lives and Batman vs Superman but Warner Bros was still adamant for a summer 2004 release date 39Christopher Walken was in negotiations for Perry White while Ratner wanted to cast Anthony Hopkins as JorEl and Ralph Fiennes as Lex Luthor two of his cast members in Red Dragon 5960Joel Edgerton turned down a chance to audition as Superman in favor of the villain TyZor before Ratner dropped out of the project in March 2003 blaming casting delays61 and aggressive feuds with producer Jon Peters 62 McG returned as director in 2003 while Fraser continued to express interest but had fears of typecasting 63 ESC Entertainment was hired for visual effects work with Kim Libreri as visual effects supervisor and Stan Winston designing a certain prototype suit 64 McG approached Shia LaBeouf for Jimmy Olsen with an interest to cast an unknown for Superman Scarlett Johansson as Lois Lane and Johnny Depp for Lex Luthor 65 The director confirmed in a 2012 interview that Robert Downey Jr had been cast as Lex Luthor 66Neal H Moritz and Gilbert Adler were set to produce the film McG also commissioned Josh Schwartz to rewrite the Abrams script He wanted to shoot in Canada which would have cost 25 million more than WBs preferred Australian locale McG also shot test footage with several candidates including Jason Behr Henry Cavill Jared Padalecki51 and Michael Cassidy67 before leaving blaming budgetary concerns and filming locations He opted to shoot in New York City and Canada but Warner Bros wanted Sydney Australia McG felt it was inappropriate to try to capture the heart of America on another continent 68 He later admitted it was his fear of flying 66 Abrams lobbied for the chance to direct his script69 but Warner Bros replaced McG with Bryan Singer in July 2004 resulting in Superman Returns that was released in 2006 70 In August 2013 Geoff Johns mentioned that Warner Bros was considering turning unproduced scripts and screenplays into original animated films and had expressed interest in making an animated adaptation of the Flyby screenplay 71 Superman Returns 2006edit Main article Superman Returns Following the departure of Ratner and McG Bryan Singer who was said to be a childhood fan of Richard Donners film was approached by Warner Bros He accepted abandoning two films already in preproduction XMen The Last Stand which coincidentally would come to be directed by Ratner and a remake of Logans Run The film uses the events of Superman and to less of a degree Superman II as backstory7273 while completely ignoring the events of Superman III and Superman IV The Quest for Peace 72 Singers story tells of Supermans return to Earth following a fiveyear search for survivors of Krypton He discovers that in his absence Lois Lane has given birth to a son and become engaged Singer chose to follow Donners lead by casting relatively unknown Brandon Routh as Superman who resembled Christopher Reeve somewhat and more highprofile actors in supporting roles such as Kevin Spacey as Lex Luthor Singer brought his entire crew from X2 to work on the film Via digitallyenhanced archive footage the late Marlon Brando appeared in the film as JorEl Superman Returns received positive reviews and grossed approximately 391 million worldwide In February 2006 four months before the release of Superman Returns Warner Bros announced a summer 2009 theatrical release date for a sequel with Bryan Singer returning as director 74Brandon RouthKate Bosworth76Kevin Spacey77Sam Huntington78Frank Langella79 and Tristan Lake Leabu were expected to reprise their roles80 however with the release of Superman Returns in July 2006 Warner Bros was hesitant on moving forward with development Warner Bros President Alan F Horn explained that Superman Returns was a very successful film but that it should have done 500 million worldwide We should have had perhaps a little more action to satisfy the young male crowd 81 Singer reacted incredulously to the studio complaints saying That movie made 400 million I dont know what constitutes underperforming these days 82 Filming was supposed to start in March 200883 no screenplay was ever written but Singer would have titled it Man of Steel with an interest in Darkseid as the main villain Singer stressed that it would have been more actionpacked than Superman Returns 84 while writer Michael Dougherty was interested in using Brai