So Long, Superman …

— by NOAH VOGT —

Boy, Superman film news is like one big rollercoaster ride at Six Flags, filled with ups and downs, twists and turns, only it’s not quite as fun a ride and it leaves you feeling just as sick.

After months of speculation from the fans about when Warner Bros. was going to get started on a new Superman film, we finally got our answer … and it’s not anytime soon.

According to a recent interview with MTV, the head of the newly-formed DC Entertainment, Diane Nelson, stated that there were no “current plans for Superman.”

So much for hoping the “2011 or else” court ruling and starting up DC Entertainment would light a fire under WB to make a Superman film ASAP.

Then again, I should have remembered, this is WB we’re talking about.

I’ve had a couple of days to digest this news now and two words have been running through my head the entire time: development hell.

Face it, that’s what Superman is in, AGAIN! I’ve always tried to remain an optimist when it comes to the development of Superman, thinking we are bound to a get a Superman film sooner rather than later. But it’s been a string of back and forth news, on again, off again, in regards to the Big Blue Boy Scout.

In the end, the result is always the same; I’m sitting in front of my computer complaining about not getting a Superman film. Recently, some fans thought there might be light at end of the tunnel. Just a couple of months ago, IESB reported WB was fast-tracking a Superman film, with possible names like James McTeigue and The Wachowski Brothers being attached.

To go along with this news, a court ruling demanded WB must have a Superman film in production by 2011 or else pay additional money to the Siegel/Shuster families.

Heck, even Brandon Routh (the actor who player Superman in “Superman Returns”) made a comment at Comic Con that he heard new developments were taking place.

However, the new statement by Nelson has seemingly trumped all of it and it appears it will be a long while before we see the Man of Steel on the big screen again.

Sure, it’s possible that things can change tomorrow. We all know WB’s tendency to change their plans on a whim and Superman could suddenly be hot for them again. But I wouldn’t hold my breath on it. If history has shown us anything, it’s that the suits at WB are plagued by indecisiveness.

After years of multiple directors, bad scripts and questionable casting (Nic Cage), WB finally nailed down a director with a script and vision in Bryan Singer and after 20 years, released another Superman film with “Superman Returns.”

Sure it wasn’t the film some were hoping it would be — both financially and creatively — but it was a solid outing nonetheless. And much like “Batman Begins,” it was a franchise that could have been built upon.

Yet here we are, more than three years later, with no new Superman film on the horizon and WB still doesn’t seem to know what to do with this franchise.

It absolutely boggles my mind that WB can start a separate branch for their comic film properties in DC Entertainment, and not have Superman at the top of their priority list.

Superman is the face of DC Comics and he arguably is the character fans are most interested in seeing on film again. Yeah, I know there is all the lawsuit stuff going on with the Siegel/Shuster families, but c’mon, it’s all about money and WB could settle this lawsuit today with a big fat check (and let’s face the facts, they can afford it). In the end, we all know both parties will settle, so let’s just get it over with.

Some have argued that WB wants Superman, but doesn’t need him. I don’t like this argument. The same could be said for many of their projects, and I’m sorry, the majority of WB’s films in development don’t have anywhere near the potential a Superman film does.

In the meantime, all we can do is wait and hope Warner Bros. and DC get their heads together to help Superman take flight on the big screen sometime soon.

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15 Comments Add Yours ↓

  1. Chris #

    I think this is very sad! At a time when Marvel is ramping up to destroy DC. We are whimpering back with the same old dialogue. We have plenty of people who could write a good story! Returns was good for introducing a character to a new generation. Sure there were flaws but there always is. Routh was superb as the man of steel! Why can’t we give him the action and plot to prove he is really super! DC and Warner. You are about to toatly give up on the best comic book hero ever made. Batman is Great! But he can’t save DC without the Big Boy Scout!

  2. Jim Corbin #

    Superman Returns is truly fantastic. It’s a damn crime that WB sees the movie as a failure and is not working on a sequel. Us Superman fans have become a pessimistic bunch after all the time the character has been in development hell. When this DC Entertainment news hit, our excitement was reserved, with a lot of people saying it’ll end up just being more of the same. The new president of DC Entertainment confirmed that. The head of DC Entertainment saying there are no plans to make a Superman film was a very bad idea strictly from a PR perspective. Whether it’s true or not you can word it in a way that keeps Superman fans excited for the future of DC Entertainment.

  3. 3

    Great article. Yes, I absolutely agree with everything here; Superman is the face and heart of DC. He should be a priority for WB.

    I also loved Superman Returns and Brandon Routh as Superman. I wish they made an action-packed sequel to this film. I’m sure it’d rule!

    If WB/DC don’t care about making more movies of my favorite superhero (Superman), they I WON’T support the other movies they make. I mean it.

    You’re FOOLS, WB.

  4. 4

    This whole process has been a shame. They have an actor in Brandon Routh who not only is great for the role now, but is getting better all of the time. And they are just letting him go to waste.

  5. Vanna #

    I have been seeing this coming for a while now and it makes me very sad that WB can’t seem to get their act together. I think they let the loud voices of a few Superman ‘fans’ scare them off. Sure Superman Returns was not the blockbuster of the year but so many people seem to forget the respectable earnings, the great reviews and the positive response it received from a LOT of people.
    But that wasn’t good enough for WB it seems, so since they can’t please everyone, they have chosen to craw into a black hole and please no one.
    WB does not deserve to have the rights to Superman. I honestly believe if the character was at another company he would be up on the big screen where he belongs.
    One good thing has come of this mess. Superman Returns gave us Brandon Routh and I see him bursting back on the screen bigger and brighter than ever.

  6. Noah Vogt #

    The thing is, it’s not just Superman that WB is failing to capitalize on, but many of their other properties as well. Flash and Wonder Woman are both falling into the same category as Superman, not to mention the trouble with Green Lantern. Batman seems to be the only exception, and I credit that to Nolan more than anything.

  7. 7

    The better option after all the judicial stuff was to make a thrilling action sequel, but a little diferent style, more like the comic, mix the qualities of byrne and donner/singer movies. Villains? Bizarro, Luthor and Brainiac, or put together Magog/Gog and the Elite.

  8. Peanut Santos #

    Too sad that it will take a long before we’re going to see Superman again on the big screen..I hope that when it finally in the works….I really hope that Brandon Routh will be back to don the tights again…and a super sequel action packed with super villains and this time were going to see Brandon give a punch to those super villains…..

  9. Don #

    I don’t care what anyone says, I really enjoyed and admired Superman Returns.

  10. Cindy #

    Good riddance to bad rubbish. The last movie killed any desire to see anymore of that mess.

  11. Robb G #


  12. Josue #

    Where do I begin? Superman is my hero. Smallville is my favorite show. I have never appreciated the way WB has treated Superman since the Lois and Clark got cancelled. I’m have no interest in the legalities being discussed. I am a consumer. I want more Superman! I like many of my friends and fellow twitterers are lyal to Superman. We watch and buy and wear and play with all thing Supes. There is no way Superman is loss of money to them. Honestly, I believe Batman is finished. Christian Bale was Not the reason for the previous movie’s success, and unfortunately the person responsible for it has passed away. The next Batman movie although it will be succesful it will not come close to The Dark Knight.

    Superman has more potential than any other Superhero franchise. It can be in Smallville, outerspace, innerspace, magic, love story, sci-fi disguises, kryptonite, red kryptonite. There is flight, loss of power, gain of power. Space exploration, detective work, humanity loss and found.

    Superman is forever.

    If they don’t want Superman, they don’t deserve him! Don’t wait till 2013. Return him imediatly, so they can start taking advantage of it’s potential. Don’t mess with the first and best Superhero of all times. He always comes back and defeats the odds, even death!

  13. Disco #

    I loved the last Superman movie. I really want a sequel.

  14. Matt #

    Glad the Superman Returns continuity is dead. What a strange Elseworlds tale that was.

  15. Don #

    That newly-released pic of Cage as Superman should really show how good it was that Singer got the job instead of Burton.