|Superman Returns (June 30th, 2006)
||[Last Updated: 12/04/05]
Director: Bryan Singer
Screenwriter: Michael Dougherty and Dan Harris
The whole thing started in 1987. The Israeli producing team of Menahem Golan and Yoram Globus (who were cousins, by the way) had bought the film rights to Superman from Alexander and Ilya Salkind, the obnoxious father-son duo who made the first three films. WB gave Golan and Globus’ production company Cannon Films $40 million bucks to make Superman IV, and Golan Globus took the money and spent it all on their other pictures. They only spent $17 million on Superman IV, chopping out key plot sequences and gutting the FX in order to keep the costs down. Anyway, Superman IV bombed because of the hack job Golan-Globus did on it, but since they still had the rights to Superman, they decided to make a fifth film for release in 1989, with Captain America (the one with Matt Salinger and Ronny Cox) director Albert Pyun at the helm. They also planned to reuse all the edited material from Superman IV and to recast Superman with another actor (their antics on IV left Reeve outraged with them). However, Cannon fell on hard times and Golan left to make his own company, 21st Century Films (which went under in the early ‘90s), and the rights to Superman reverted back to the Salkinds. This is when Superboy was in full swing on TV, and the Salkinds decided to restart the Superman film series using Superboy as the prequel. Hence, Superman comic scribe and his Superboy writing partner Mark Jones were drafted to write a script pitting Superman against Brainiac in a story set in the bottled city of Kandor. Under the working title Superman: The New Movie, this film was to have been released in 1994, with Superboy star Gerard Christopher taking over for Reeve as Superman.
Well, 1993 rolled around, and WB bought all the non-comics rights to Superman lock, stock, and barrel. WB forced the Salkinds to pull Superboy from the airwaves completely so as not to interfere with the planned Lois & Clark series (which Gerard Christopher auditioned for, and was turned down because he’d played Superboy-that’s how Dean Cain got the part), and scrapped the Bates/Jones script. Deciding to base the movie on the "death and return" story from the comic books (they figured that the big sales figures the story racked up would translate into box office success), WB turned the project over to their pet producer Jon Peters, an illiterate, abusive, womanizer (I wish I was making this up, but I’m not-this is all true, every word of it) who got his start as Barbra Streisand’s hairdresser/lover and produced the Tim Burton Batman films. Peters, who hates the classic Superman in every way imaginable, set out to reinvent Superman in the "sex, killing, rock & roll, and whatever movie was a hit last weekend" style that all of his movies are based in. So he hired Jonathan Lemkin to write the script. Lemkin’s draft had Superman dying in battle with Doomsday, but managing to impregnate Lois as he’s dying by way of immaculate conception. Lois is killed off later in the story, but not before giving birth to a baby who grows 21 years in three weeks’ time, and takes over as the new Superman and saves the universe from Armageddon. Lemkin’s script-which even he proudly boasted was campy and silly-was scrapped because WB thought it was too similar to Batman Forever. So Peters hired porn veteran Gregory Poirer-who scripted Peters’ Rosewood-to start over. Poirer’s script had an angst-ridden Superman visiting a shrink in order to deal with his feeling of being an outsider and a freak by virtue of his alien heritage, and being killed by a Doomsday who bled kryptonite, the Silver Banshee, and the Parasite. WB liked the script, but when Kevin Smith was offered to be a consultant on the film, he blasted the script for its lack of respect for the source material. He made such a convincing case that WB hired him to write the film.
And this is where things got really ugly. Peters demanded that Superman be stripped of his red and blue suit, arguing that the suit was "too pink, too faggy." So Smith stuck Superman in the black and silver suit from the "death of" story. Peters also hated the FX in the 1978 Superman film with Chris Reeve, so he wanted to get rid of Superman’s ability to fly. So Smith portrayed Superman as a red blur while in flight, creating a sonic boom every time he took off (he took this from The Dark Knight Returns). Peters them told Smith to have Brainiac fight polar bears at the Fortress of Solitude, demanding that the film be wall-to-wall action. Smith thought it was a stupid idea, so Peters said, "Then have Brainiac fight Superman’s bodyguards!" Smith responded, "Why the hell would Superman need bodyguards?" Peters wouldn’t let up, so Smith caved in and had Brainiac fight the polar bears. Then Peters demanded that Brainiac give Luthor a hostile space dog, arguing that the movie needed a cuddly Chewbacca character who could be turned into a toy. Then, after watching Chasing Amy, Peters liked the gay black character in the film so much that he ordered Smith to make Brainiac’s robot servant L-Ron gay, asserting that the film needed a gay R2-D2 with attitude. Then Peters demanded that Superman fight a huge spider at the end of the film, which Smith refused to do-he used a Thanagarian Snare Beast instead. (However, Peters did manage to recycle his spider idea and use it in Wild Wild West.) When all was said and done, Smith’s script was severely compromised by the time it came to its second draft, but WB liked it enough to give it the green-light. When it came time to cast Superman, Peters wanted to cast Sean Penn, because he "has the eyes of a killer and the charisma of a caged animal," per his performance in Dead Man Walking. But when Nicolas Cage offered his services as either Luthor or Brainiac, Smith pleaded with WB to cast Cage as Superman, feeling that Cage had the gravitas to pull the role off. Peters agreed, for totally different reasons. "Being an outsider and feeling like we don’t belong is the essence of Superman," Peters boasted, saying that Cage could play up the alien side of Supes. Smith tried to get his friend Robert Rodriguez to direct the film, but Peters and WB saw the film as a vehicle for Tim Burton, who they hired shortly after Cage. Burton, having been given almost total creative control, hated Smith’s script because it was too faithful to the comics (Burton doesn’t read comics, and he always brags about it). So he fired Smith and trashed his script, hiring his Batman Returns crony Wesley Strick to recreate Superman per Burton’s vision.
So what was Burton’s vision? Not much different from Peters’, in fact. Burton hated the flying FX in the 1978 film, too, so he didn’t want Superman to fly. Instead, he put Superman in a Supermobile. He also hated the classic costume, too, hence the oddball designs he proffered with the silver ElectroSupes S-shield and armored Keaton Batman-style boots, which are as follows:
1. A partially translucent suit that would allow full view of Superman's internal organs, as reported by the magazine Cinescape shortly after Burton assumed control of the film. (This design was confirmed by Burton's camp, but was never committed to paper, leaving some people following the project wondering if Burton was really planning to use this or if this was a hoax. Nevertheless, Burton's diehard fans adored this idea and praised it as the height of genius and coolness, while most Superman fans were left scratching their heads over it.)
2. An all-black, alien-looking suit that resembled a "cool cross" between Edward Scissorhands, Batman, and a Borg.
3. A silver body armor/healing suit with details that would make Superman's body look robotic.
4. An all-dark blue suit with a "blood-red" cape.
Burton was also opposed to the casting of Cage, who’s a diehard comic book geek and was protesting Burton’s planned changes. Even though he put on a public face of being delighted with the casting of Cage, Burton was privately trying to get Cage fired and replaced with Ralph Fiennes, and he kept trying to do so all the while he was on the film. Hulk Hogan was then approached to play Doomsday, and he immediately agreed (this was reported on the WCW/NOW site at that time). However, Burton envisioned Doomsday as being "kinda chunky" and told Hogan to gain weight for the part. Hogan blew a fuse and turned Burton down flat, so Burton had Doomsday redesigned to look like a cybernetically-enhanced Rancor and dropped the idea of casting Hogan. Jim Carrey was briefly considered to play Brainiac-envisioned by Burton in a variety of weird forms, one of them an Independence Day rip-off and another a green head in a glass ball balanced on a black pyramid, but Burton made a handshake deal with Tim Allen to give him the role (Allen said to the Chicago Sun-Times, "I’ll shave my head in a second!"). Burton also made a handshake deal with Chris Rock to cast him as Jimmy Olsen, who Burton envisioned as a smart-ass street-punk type. (Burton had wanted to cast one of the Wayans brothers as Robin in Batman Returns, but WB wouldn’t let him.) Then he made similar arrangements with Kevin Spacey and Cameron Diaz to cast them as Luthor and Lois, respectively. He also intended to shoot the Metropolis exteriors in Pittsburgh, making use of the Gothic buildings there. Meanwhile, Jon Peters saw a group of Shaolin monks performing on Jay Leno, and liked them so much that he tried to get them cast in the film. He also tried to have the Eradicator-now renamed "K" by Burton (to be voiced by Jack Nicholson) and reinvented as a robotic Alfred to Superman’s gadget-dependent Batman (swear to God, I’m not kidding; Burton and Peters’ Superman was to be reliant on Batman-style gadgets)-tote around an "Eradicator stick," because he saw visions of posters and toys based on it. And the Eradicator wasn’t the only computerized character to be radically reconceived; Burton planned to end the film with Luthor and Brainiac merging Dark Claw-style to become a single villain called either "Luthinac" or "Lexiac" (he hadn’t decided yet). But the most controversial thing Burton did was brag to a radio news service in Texas during an interview that he intended to play up "Superman’s darker, more murderous side" and that he hoped Cage was up to the task of portraying that aspect of Superman. Also, Michael Keaton announced to MTV that he was going to be in the film (he and Burton are pals-he only did the Batman films as a favor to Burton; he actually hated playing the role and said so to E! when Jack Frost was released), but when asked if he was going to play Batman, he said, "Not exactly." (In fact, Burton had cut Kevin Smith’s hoped-for Batman cameo out of the film, so nobody has any clue who Keaton was to play.)
Anyway, the Strick script-which Burton adored-was rejected by WB. (In fact, low-level WB execs-then-WB head honchos Bob Daly and Terry Semel were in total support of Burton-Peters-were calling up Kevin Smith and complaining about how Burton and Peters were destroying Superman.) So Burton hired Akiva Goldsman of Joel Schumacher’s Batman films to rewrite Strick’s script. Goldsman’s rewrite was rejected. Then Burton hired Ron Bass to rewrite Goldsman’s rewrite of Strick’s script. Bass’s rewrite was rejected. Then Burton hired Dan Gilroy to rewrite Bass’ rewrite of Goldsman’s rewrite of Strick’s script. For the moment, WB was appeased. Meanwhile, Burton kept changing his mind about the film’s design scheme, and was constantly ordering the art teams to change whatever it was they were doing every day (SFX ran an article about Burton’s slave-driving the art team). Nicolas Cage, having been fighting tooth and nail against Burton and Peters’ vision of Superman (even though he’d been putting on a happy public face about working with them), angrily demanded that he be allowed to wear the classic Superman costume and fly. So WB relented much to Burton’s dismay, ordering up a rubber Superman suit and flying FX tests. (A chintzy, Sam Jones-as-Flash Gordon-type Superman suit was dished up, but it went over like a lead balloon.) However, when Cage tried on the rubber suit, it looked stupid. And when they stuck a long-haired wig on him, it looked even worse. And after Burton and Gilroy were finished with their rewritten script, WB looked it over and loathed it. So, in April 1998, just weeks before the film was to start shooting, WB put the film on indefinite hold.
It was at this point that Lorenzo DiBonaventura, a WB exec who was and still is a long-time ally of Peters, joined the production and openly supported everything Burton wanted to do with Superman. It was with DiBonaventura that Burton and Peters had Gilroy rewrite the script completely, mixing and matching elements from the Strick, Goldsman, Bass, and Gilroy drafts into a single script. The end result had Jor-El inventing Brainiac, only to abandon him when Kal-El is born. Brainiac is jealous of Kal-El, so he blows up Krypton. However, Kal-El is sent to Earth, so Brainiac vows to hunt him down and kill him. Jump forward 30 years. Superman-who’s been having a full-blown sexual affair with Lois-is forced to reveal his true identity to her when she finds out that Superman’s escape rocket landed on the Kent farm. (The Kents were dead in this draft.) Anyway, Brainiac comes to Earth with a kryptonite-bleeding Doomsday and merges with Lex Luthor-who in this draft was basically portrayed as the Joker in a business suit-to become "Lexiac." So Lexiac tricks Superman into coming to the LexCorp tower, where Doomsday kills him in combat and runs off. (He never shows up again in this draft.) Then Lexiac seizes control of all the world’s nukes and seduces Lois-who’s pregnant with Superman’s love child!!!!! Meanwhile, Superman is revived by "K," the combined, still-living essence of Jor-El and Lara. Initially powerless upon his rebirth, Superman is told by "K" that all he needs to do is have faith in himself, and so regains his powers by sheer force of will (yes, yes, I know he’s supposed to get them back by exposure to sunlight, but bear in mind what we’re dealing with here). And so Superman engages Lexiac in combat and saves the world with 10 seconds left on the nuclear clock, separating Brainiac and Luthor, who has no idea that he was possessed by Brainiac. And while Lois and Clark are undecided if they want to get married or just live together, all that matters is that they’re happy.
This was the script Burton proffered in late 1998. WB loved it, but Burton’s egotistical attitude was wearing thin on them. It came to the point where Burton started smart-mouthing them, trying to bully them into giving him his way. As such WB finally fired him in late ‘98/early ’99. (Burton later tried to pin the blame for the project's lack of momentum on WB in his book Burton on Burton, claiming that he was innocent and that it was everyone else who was screwing things up. Of course, everyone knew he was lying, and blew him off.) Peters and DiBonaventura-now Peters’ co-producer on the film (and he still is, by the way)-continued to polish the Gilroy draft, deleting the Lois pregnancy at WB’s behest. Meanwhile, an aspiring screenwriter named Alex Ford tried to talk WB out of the Peters/Burton/DiBonaventura plans for the movie, instead proposing a series of 6-7 Superman films. He went so far as to write a "Year One" script featuring Luthor and Metallo-posing as a superhero-as the villains. But WB, being so enamored of Peters, refused to even consider the Ford script and trashed it. Peters then tried to get Michael Bay, Brett Ratner, Shekhar Kapur, and Martin Campbell to take over as director, but they all hated Peters and the script, and refused to even consider it. So the Gilroy script was dumped in late 1999, and William Wisher was hired to start over. However, with The Matrix being a big success, Peters and DiBonaventura decided that Superman should ditch his red and blue in favor of Matrix-like duds. As such, press blurbs for the new script announced that Superman would be killed off and reborn in a brand-new incarnation, and that the new script would recreate Superman "sans the tights and more Matrix-like." Oliver Stone was then approached to direct the film from the Matrix-ized Wisher script, but he ultimately turned it down. Cage got fed up with the whole thing, and finally quit in mid-2000. So Peters reportedly offered Russell Crowe $30 million to play Superman, but Crowe wasn’t interested. (And if you thought the backlash against Cage was bad, the backlash against Crowe was even worse-people were hoping Dennis Quaid would be cast as Luthor so they could root for the bad guy to win.) The Wisher script was tossed out, and Paul Attansio was then hired to rewrite the script, now retitled Superman Destruction. Then in July 2001, as Planet of the Apes was being released, Coming Attractions reported that WB made a handshake deal with Tim Burton to rehire him to take over the film should POTA make over $250 million at the box office. (In fact, WB wanted to rehire him after Sleepy Hollow proved successful.) Promising Burton even more creative control than he had the last time, WB apparently offered to cast Jim Carrey as Brainiac and David Duchovny as Superman to sweeten the deal. However, POTA didn’t make that much money, so Burton was given the boot again. And so Peters and DiBonaventura hired McG of Charlie’s Angels to direct the film, and so far McG is (a) aiming to make a Superman movie in the spirit of Charlie’s Angels and Tomb Raider and (b) has offered the role of Lois to Catherine Zeta-Jones (formerly one of Jon Peters’ many conquests), Cameron Diaz, and Jennifer Lopez. (This news hails from Superman CINEMA, by the way.) Additionally, while Attansio has yet to deliver a script, rumor has it that Thing to Do in Denver When You’re Dead and Con Air writer Scott Rosenberg is being courted to rewrite the script.
Attansio was then cast a side for Joy Ride screenwriter J.J. Abrams. Along with McG's involvment in the development of Charlie's Angels 2, Superman was in an uphill battle against Wolfgang Petersen's Batman Vs. Superman. With all the in fighting within the upper mangement of The WB, it looked like BvS would come first, then would be followed by Batman 5 and Superman 5. Then two things happened: Troy and Abrams. The Iliad had been Wolfgang Petersen's pet project for awhile, and with the chance for a green light he jumped on board. Things suddenly could go either way, then Abrams delivered the first draft of his script and "it has apparently knocked the socks off of everyone there." Superman 5 was bordering a greenlight. Then McG had to choose between Superman and Charlie's Angels 2... He choose the angels.
Jon Peters then signed Rush Hour director Brett Ratner. Rater was looking for a more traditional Superman; Anthony Hopkins was being courted for the role of Jor-El and Superman was going to be played by an unknown actor. With a highly praise yet locked away script and a director which did not shatter fan confidence, Superman: The Man of Steel looked like it was about to fly. Then the shit hit the fan... Again.
Ain't it Cool News got a hold of this reportedly perfect script, and tore it to shreds. The draft included a planet Krypton which didn't blow up, Lex Luthor as a CIA agent who is also Kryptonian, and tosses away everything set up by the current TV series Smallville. Fans were outraged; The WB, fearing another Batman & Robin, went balistic. The script went under major re-writes by Abrams and Ratner was now under great pressure to cast a well known actor as the lead and get the damn thing in the can. But once Ratner's contract went up, he walked away and never looked back. Jon Peters turned again to McG, who had then just completed filming on Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, but after some time McG again dropped the project. Jon Peters was once again left with nothing... nadda... zip.
Variety reports that director Bryan Singer has had a falling out with 20th Century Fox over his deal with Warner Bros. to direct "Superman". In March, Singer pacted with WB to direct a remake of "Logan's Run". Then in July, Singer's representatives ended longstanding talks with Fox for Singer to helm "X-Men 3" and quickly completed negotiations with Warner Bros. for him to replace McG on "Superman". Eager to quickly move the movie into production, WB went so far as to make a pay-or-play offer to Singer if he'd consent to make Superman fly post-haste, says the trade. He took it, and Fox soon notified him that his deal there was over. As for who will direct "X-Men 3"... Fox remains unclear on the subject.
Bryan Singer, Batman Vs. Superman
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||Warner Bros. Pictures Casts Brandon Routh as Superman
BURBANK, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 21, 2004--Warner Bros. Pictures announced today that Brandon Routh, a 25-year-old native of Iowa with television and film acting experience, has been cast as The Man of Steel in the Studio's upcoming Superman epic, to be directed by Bryan Singer. The announcement was made today by Jeff Robinov, President of Production for Warner Bros. Pictures.
The untitled Superman movie is expected to begin principal photography in Australia early next year for release in summer, 2006. It is produced by Jon Peters, Bryan Singer and Gilbert Adler from a screenplay by Michael Dougherty & Dan Harris. No other casting has been announced.
Stated Alan Horn, President and Chief Operating Officer of Warner Bros., "We are so pleased to have put this extraordinary team of filmmakers and talent together and to be moving forward with a project we've all anticipated so much. I think we're going to make a Superman movie that all of us can be very proud to bring to our audience around the world."
Routh was chosen for the role of Superman following an exhaustive search that spanned the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and Australia. Thousands of candidates were interviewed before the final selection was made.
Singer commented on his choice of a star, saying "Contrary to speculation, it was always my absolute intention to hire an unknown for this role. Brandon is an extremely fine actor who possesses the physical qualifications of Clark Kent/Superman. But he also embodies the legacy and history of this character in a way that makes me certain he's the right choice."
"We respect and appreciate the intense interest that our fans around the world have in Superman, and we went everywhere in search of a talented actor who would represent his look, character and presence," said Robinov. "We think Brandon is a gifted young performer who can re-energize this iconic character and excite new audiences about the legend of Superman."
Routh's television credits include One Life to Live, Gilmore Girls, Will & Grace and Cold Case. He recently wrapped his first feature role in the upcoming film Deadly, starring opposite Laura Prepon.
||Superman: Make or Break
Sources informed Superman-V.com that last week McG gave a make or break Superman presentation to the WB execs. The presentation -- thought to include conceptual art, storyboards and set designs -- got a positive reaction from the WB suits.
Expect McG to reinforce his choice of Henry Cavill for the lead. On a side note, there's some buzz about Tom Welling getting the lead. Not true. His agent had apparently been pursuing the role. However, Welling doesn't want the part, and WB and McG want to cast their own Superman, not use someone else's. Smallville is its own continuity, it won't be related to any future Superman film.
||Beyoncé Still Up for Lois Lane?
Beyoncé Knowles confirmed to ExtraTV she is still up for a big role in a superhero franchise—Lois Lane in "Superman." Beyoncé says, "I hope so. Everyone pray that happens for me."
||Beyoncé Lois Lane Rumors Debunked
The bright boys over at AICN got around to debunking their own rumor that Gold Member's Beyonce Knowles was up for the part of Lois Lane in the upcoming Superman project:
"THAT is no longer the case today. Today, according to a plethora of sources, the part of Lois Lane is WIDE-OPEN and the line being spread was that Beyonce was, of course, never going to be Lois Lane."
While Superhero Hype has some more on Depp: "Johnny Depp for Lex Luthor - bit of misunderstanding. What is really happening is Depp's NAME, ie. he hasn't been contacted (in case you haven't noticed, he's going to be busy for quite a while) is being circled for the role of Superman's father, Jor-el."
Superman-V.Com whipped up a nice summary of old news and new news:
Some good news for all you Superman fans. We can confirm the recent Moviehole story. The Superman production will be moving to the Fox Studios in Sydney after Rob Cohen's "Stealth" wraps on April 30th. Here's what the Australian Film Commission told Robert:
In the Dec 03 issue of Cinefantastique; there's a Richard Donner interview mainly focusing on his latest film, TIMELINE. Of particular interest is the mention of an in-depth interview with Donner on Superman and his vision of Superman 2 in a future issue.
We're aware that Superman is booked in to shoot at Fox, but currently there's no director or leader actor attached, so there are no real details we can supply.
Now for a bit more on the production, which is still being referred to as "Fly-By" at WB. Mark Mansbridge is Art Director, he's got a pretty impressive CV, including Matrix 2 and 3 and Master and Commander. He's been on the movie for some time now.
No start date has been set but they are looking to begin pre-production in three months. The majority of shooting will be done in Sydney (doubling for Metropolis) and the Fox Studios. Expect work to be done in the US as well, we've already seen location shots for a possible "Smallville" shoot in Washington. Fenway Park may also host a scene from the film. Also, no costume design has been finalised yet, so plenty of time to avoid another Catwoman!
January 2005 is looking like a strong possibility for the start of principal photography; with pre-production taking place throughout 2004. The script is currently undergoing re-writes by McG and JJ Abrams (who talked to Sci Fi Wire about the movie recently).
Despite what the AFC say, McG is attached to Superman. WB just haven't gone through official channels yet to confirm it. I think it's safe to assume he will direct this movie. Directors usually sign on to a project when it moves from development to pre-production. Every insider S-V talks to refers to it as "McG's Superman". Robert asked his reps if he'd dotted the i's and crossed the t's yet, "No comment at this point". He went on to say, "I'm sure they'll be an announcement soon."
Another possibility for the project is DOP Russell Carpenter, who gave the Charlie's Angels flicks an impressive comic book sheen. So, is he on the movie? His agent said, "I can't give out that kind of information on my client." He's just finished work on a movie called "Noel". His schedule for 2005 is free, as is Composer Ed Shearmur and Editor Wayne Wahrman, all McG regulars, all strong possibilities.
Now, casting. Henry Cavill's agency said he is not committed to any new projects. An enquiry about Superman came up with some interesting answers: "I'm not sure if I'm allowed to say anything... Nothing has been confirmed... I've got no news for your website".
Look out for him in Tristan & Isolde later this year. Another former candidate, Ashton Kucher, has shown some interest in taking the part to MTV. My hunch is he only sees Superman as a vehicle to revive his nose-diving career.
Selma Blair claims she's "this close" to signing up for the movie. Most likely for the part of Lois Lane. Selma's a youthful looking 31 and I could see her working opposite Cavill.
Lastly, Wolfgang Petersen to direct Superman? His agent flat out denied this. Radiant Pictures (Petersen and Diane Rathbun's Production Company) say they are still "developing" Batman vs. Supeman but wouldn't comment on details like a possible writer. Could the rumour about David Benioff taking a pass at the script be true, who knows?
||Final Piece of the Puzzle
Coming Attractions has been handed a previously unknown piece of the puzzle, something that explains what happened behind closed doors and changed the plan of action for Batman Vs. Superman: J.J. Abrams screenplay for Superman 5 has been handed into Warner Bros. execs -- and it has apparently knocked the socks off of everyone there.
Late Friday night we were contacted by a source who wished to be known as "Rusty Ryan". He told us that Abrams has handed in his draft of the Superman movie and -- get this -- it's damn near 200 pages in length. Yikes, just yikes!
"It's good. I mean, it is REALLY good," writes our pal Rusty. "It's so good they want to go as soon as they have an actor. It's so good that it bumped the half-assed Superman vs. Batman project right out of the way."
However, there's now one obstacle that is preventing WB from committing to make the Man of Steel fly again: the director known as Joseph McGinty Nichol, a.k.a. McG. "McG ain't ready to make it anytime soon," explains Rusty. "So, McG may be leaving the project, though he was so closely involved with J.J. writing it that J.J. doesn't want anyone else involved."
Rusty tells us that Warners new plan is to try and persuade McG to hand the reigns over to another director. If McG agrees to it, Warners will move faster than a speeding bullet to lock in a new and high-profile director and then fast-track the project. "Let's face it, it is criminally bad-business on Warner Bros. part (after the success of Spider-Man) to not make a project with THE MOST RECOGNIZABLE character in the world as soon as they can. Even if it's just okay, it'll make $500 million." We'd have to agree with our man Ryan on this call.
But wait, there's more: even at this early stage of the game, before McG has given the studio his blessing or refusal, Warners has four potential candidates in mind for directing the next Superman movie. They are:
Bachelor Number One: Director of Panic Room, Fight Club and Seven: David Fincher.
Bachelor Number Two: Director of The Insider, Manhunter and Ali: Michael Mann.
Bachelor Number Three: Director of The X-Files: Fight the Future and this summer's Reign of Fire: Rob Bowman.
Bachelor Number Four: Director of Erin Brockovich, Traffic, Ocean's 11 and this winter's Solaris: Steven Soderbergh.
Their names are being tossed around right now as the four top players Warner Bros. would go to in a New York Minute if and when McG gives it his blessing. Warners is that excited about what Abrams put onto page.
[an error occurred while processing this directive]081502155646 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Batman/Superman, WTF's Going On? [an error occurred while processing this directive]With the latest news that Batman vs. Superman's greenlight flickered out, Batman On Film's done some digging and let's see what he's turned up:
WB does not like superhero flicks at all. The only reason they do them is because they make money. Sometimes. Says a source, "I've heard this from writers who've worked on WB-based comic book films: WB hates comic book films, they don't get them, and they only make them to make money. That could explain all their back and forth on the Batman and Superman franchises these last few years." He goes on to say, "Every comic book flick they touch turns to dust. I remember what this writer whose worked on WB comic book films told me: that WB hates these movies. Worse, they literally have a formula written down that these films MUST follow -- even if it means they'll be crappy." Can you believe this tripe?! Here is more from FILMFORCE:
Anyway, it seems that perhaps BvS would take WB out of their comfort zone. Maybe it bucked their "formula" and decided they didn't want to take the risk. Wolfgang Petersen might have wanted it done a certain way that went againt WB's vision of the film. Nonetheless, several sources indicated to me that casting and money played a huge role in the demise of this film. They could not get the actors they wanted to do it under their terms. Several sources indicated to BOF that no one would agree to do sequels--or prequels mind you--unless they had some sort of idea where or control over where the character and franchise was headed. And with WB's track record, do you blame them. This is the major reason Jude Law walked away.
"In his latest Hot Button column, David Poland wisely speculates that with Batman vs. Superman delayed for nearly two years and no casting set, the likelihood of any of the previously rumored actors actually appearing in the film seems unlikely now. For example, writes Poland, "no matter how much Colin Farrell wants to be Batman, his agents are not going to sign him now to start a picture in 18 months or two years unless the dollar signs are so big that they can't imagine him being worth more then ... and that's just about impossible. The bigger question is, how the hell can a company like Warner Bros. continue to allow their biggest feature franchises to lie fallow year after year after year." But Batman On Film comes back with surprising news:
There is never any ONE SINGLE REASON why a film gets put into turnaround. Even "The Matrix" was in turnaround for several months before Warners/VRP relented and gave it the greenlight. In the case of "BvS", it looks like a studio decision (they are unsure about their batting average in this genre -- and that has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with the fantasy that "they hate these kinds of films"), but the only way a studio will change its mind once the plug has been pulled is if the producer (Petersen) musters his forces and gets them to greenlight the project. Other contributing factors are clearly casting the leads; the studio wants stars -- and stars cost money. Additonally, stars who want contractual "control" (read: script approval) over the future direction of their characters (read: sequels) are a studio headache -- particularly when the stars in question (Law? Farrell?) HAVE NEVER HEADLINED A HIT MOVIE!!! These guys, from a marketing/accounting point of view, are long-shots AT BEST! You may not think so, I may not think so, but the Warners execs who will lose their jobs if the film tanks certainly think so. As to the "Superman" McG project, I wouldn't hold my breath. McG is generally considered on the same par as Michael Bay (read: talent free zone); Warners see "Supes" as an all-action epic -- not a shampoo commercial. There is absolutely NO WAY McG will end up directing that film. He barely survived "Charlie's Angels" (it is acknowledged that he had virtually NOTHING to do with its success), yet his name is attached to "Supes" because of a little thing we call "horse trading". (More on that for another day). My bet is that "BY1" will be the first taxi off the rank. Why? Hmm. Warners wants a "Bat" flick...they want Aronofsky to direct it...and Aronofsky is about to direct a LARGE budget thriller with a MAJOR lead actor...geez...think this is all leading to something BIG? After "The Fountain", Aronofsky will be in the hot seat. Trust me, "BY1" is only a greenlight away. Year One first? If that's true, 2005 looks to be the earliest, with 2006 more likly. This also cuts down the tent pole The WB originally planed for 2004 with Catwoman and Scooby-Two as the stakes. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]081402162505 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Batman Interview w/ Christian Bale [an error occurred while processing this directive]Moviehole sat down and had a talk with Christian Bale (American Psycho). Amung many movies, they discuss Batman:
I've also been a big fan of Tim Burton's Batman movies [Batman (1989) & Batman Returns]. His almost gothic approach brought a wonderful cinematic feel to an American hero. I'd love to do [the] part but I'd also worry about being typecast. [B]atman is a wonderful character - the duality between his alter ego, Bruce Wayne, and the dark knight could be a fascinating character study. Lorenzo di Bonaventura, executive vp worldwide motion pictures at Warners now says otherwise.
"Frankly, both pictures ('Batman vs. Superman' and 'Troy') are big opportunities for Warners," said Bonaventura, "We decided that 'Batman vs. Superman' is like a good wine -- it will find its time and only get better. Wolfgang instinctually saw the opportunity in both pictures and decided that 'Troy' was the one to go with first." With "Batman vs. Superman" sidelined, either of the two other superhero projects that Warners is developing -- "Superman," with a script by J.J. Abrams, and "Batman: Year One," to which Aronofsky is attached -- could now become the first of the trio to go into production? Sources told The Continuum that an announcement on a Superman movie is expected soon after director Wolfgang Petersen announced his intentions to direct Troy before Batman vs. Superman. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]080802174251 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Casting and Timing Rumors on Superman Movies [an error occurred while processing this directive]A source at the Warner Bros. Studios in Burbank has confirmed to the Superman Homepage that Jude Law is still in the running to be cast as Superman in the up-coming "Batman vs Superman" movie, but that the part has not yet been cast. It was indicated however that Colin Farrel had indeed won the part of Batman, and that the top choice to play Superman was actually Josh Hartnett (Halloween H20 / The Faculty).
Other sources also indicated that the schedule of the two movies would be something like "Batman vs Superman" (directed by Wolfgang Peterson) to be released in 2003-2004, with "Superman" (directed by McG) set for a 2005 release. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]080302141445 [an error occurred while processing this directive]J.J. Abrams Talks Superman Movie [an error occurred while processing this directive]J.J. Abrams, who has been attached as writer for a Superman movie, told The Continuum that the film's future might be cleared up soon. Warner Bros. recently announced a Batman vs. Superman movie. Superman, which McG is attached to direct, and Batman: Year One remain in development:
"It's a very complicated thing right now," Abrams told The Continuum after the panel for his television series, Alias, at Comic-Con International in San Diego on Friday. "In the next couple of weeks, I think it will be much clearer." [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]072302224203 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Batman vs. Superman Rehabilitating Characters [an error occurred while processing this directive]Variety reports that it's looking good for Darren Aronofsky's Batman: Year One and McG's Superman. Warner Bros. is counting on Batman vs. Superman to rehabilitate the characters for their own two films:
The arsenal of DC Comics-generated superhero films at Warner Bros. is expansive and it's with good reason that "Batman vs. Superman" will be the first one out of the gates. WB is counting on helmer Wolfgang Petersen's "Batman vs. Superman" pic to rehabilitate characters that were nearly ruined in the last Batman and Superman pics. They'll get a last hurrah before new versions of both heroes are ushered in. There are five other DC projects that should keep the pipeline filled through at least 2010. It's a race to see whether the next in production will be the McG-directed "Superman" or the Darren Aronofsky-directed "Batman: Year One." The latter has time, given the postponement of Aronofsky's Brad Pitt pic for WB, "The Fountain," which will not get made unless its budget can be pared to $70 million. Also viable are "Batman Beyond," "Catwoman" (which still has Ashley Judd purring), and "Wonder Woman," which George Miller might direct. Batman On Film has an interesting take from one of their most trusted and damn on-the-money insiders:
"As you know, [I've had some involvement with] MGM/UA, and it's interesting that Christian Bale's name has been bandied around for the 'Batman' role in 'Batman Vs. Superman'. Why interesting? Because MGM/UA are very hot for Bale to step into Pierce Brosnan's shoes for the Bond franchise. Brosnan has committed to doing at least one more Bond film after 'Die Another Day' comes out, but after that, the studio is looking at Bale and no-one else for the Bond role. So, the question is: Does Bale do Bond AND Batman? Probably not. Warners wouldn't have a problem with him doing both, but the Broccoli family sure would. They like to keep a tight rein on their Bond actors, and one franchise is enough as far as they're concerned. As for other potential Batman's, Colin Farrell's reps at C.A.A. are pushing him VERY hard for the role in 'B vs. S.' Personally, I still think Jude Law is going to put on the cowl at some point in the future, whether it be for Petersen or Aronofsky (if 'YEAR ONE' ever happens). Law's name has been thrown around so much by both his reps and the casting gurus at Warners that his odds are better than average. I suppose it just depends on whether he WANTS to do it...and let's face it, he might not." Batman On Film also reports that even though there has been no definite start date, code named 'Asylum' directed by Wolfgang Petersen is rumored to be filming in the Florida area next spring. Tampa Bay and Orlando insiders have confirmed that the WB have been visiting Tropicana Field ( Formally Thunderdome) and The Citrus Bowl as a possible locations for filming. This also may be the reason why Universal is not renting out their studio buildings between Jan and May of next year. Possibly Waners is renting them out?. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]070302161259 [an error occurred while processing this directive]What About Year One & Superman V? [an error occurred while processing this directive]Batman On Film got some clarification about yesterday's news from Variety that Warner Bros. is now most looking to the Batman/Superman project for its next superhero film. But what about McG's Superman and Darren Aronofsky's Batman: Year One?
"I really think the studio has decided to go with the Batman/Superman project first, and then relaunch the characters in their own franchises. They could still do 'Year One' later as a prequel, and they could even do McG's Superman film down the line. Remember, Aronofsky and McG were hired to develop a project; they were not greenlighted to make the films. Just like [Paul] Dini and Yakin with 'Batman Beyond' a few years back." A relaunch of characters RIGHT AFTER a new movie doesn't make a lick of sense. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]061302144443 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Courteney Cox Interested in Playing Lois Lane [an error occurred while processing this directive]Superhero Hype! reports that "Friends" star Courteney Cox was just interviewed on Utah's 94.9 ZHT radio station, who were broadcasting from Universal Studios, and she mentioned that she's very interested in playing the role of Lois Lane in the upcoming McG-directed Superman in development at Warner Bros.
"Friends" co-star Jennifer Aniston has also expressed interest in playing Wonder Woman. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]050802191805 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Superman Movie News! [an error occurred while processing this directive]Superhero Hype!, via the London Times newspaper, has an intriguing report on the in-the-planning Superman film. Here's the article quoted in full:
SUPERMAN TO RETURN TO PINEWOOD By Andrew Leslie Also, SHATM has an exclusive review of the never-before-seen (online) Superman film script which was to have been filmed in the early 1990s, and produced by Alexander & Ilya Salkind. This was the project in the planning immediately prior to Warner Bros./Jon Peters getting their hands on the character, and we all know how that's gone through up-to-now. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]042102144632 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Pinewood Studios & Superman in Toronto [an error occurred while processing this directive]A Superhero Hype! source from Toronto has additional news about the "Superman" shooting location.
Following the record breaking sales figures of Cinema Tickets in the U.S. To see one big Comic Book Superhero, Spider-Man come to life [estimated $100 million dollars], plans are afoot to set in motion the return to the screen of the worlds favourite Superhero, Superman.
There is set to be a new Superman movie for Christmas 2003, which will be a $100 million plus production and will be filming right here in London's Pinewood Studios. I can reveal that the Bond Production designer Peter Lamont will begin to prepare for designing duties for the movie, currently entitled SUPERMAN: THE MAN OF STEEL at Pinewood after he has finished work on the 20th Bond Movie Die Another Day. John Graysmark, will be Art Director and is already scouting location work at Pinewood for use in the new movie. Peter Lamont became Production Designer of the Bonds with For Your Eyes Only and has since won an Academy Award for Titanic, while Graysmark was Production Designer himself on the last Superman Movie, Superman IV: The Quest for Peace, a cheap production and box office flop in 1987. He has sinced worked on Kevin Costner's Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.
A Pinewood Studios spokeswoman said "It's great that a movie of this size will be filmed at Pinewood, and although Superman is an American creation and a worldwide icon, Pinewood seems like his spiritual home, it really feels that way, like the character is coming home". This is refernce to the fact that three Superman movies were filmed at Pinewood from 1977-1982. The Director will be one McG, who had success with the movie version of Charlie's Angels. Nobody has yet been cast to play the Kryptonian character but rumour has it that Brendan Fraser who made The Mummy and The Mummy Returns at Pinewood is bulking up to fit the leotard and Cape and to look good flying. Rumours have also sugested that Cameron Diaz is ready to portray Supermans eternal flame Lois Lane. Filming will start later this year.
I read [the] article about Superman and the possibility of filming at Pinewood studios in England...well, Pinewood has just bought land on the waterfront to build another studio here...and rumour from others in the media here is that Superman may film here....especially with the new studio and low dollar. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]041902164827 [an error occurred while processing this directive]More Superman Casting Rumors [an error occurred while processing this directive]I always seem to twitch a bit with these Superman V rumors, but here's an interesting one from Superhero Hype!, mostly because a recording studio is named.
I have a nugget of info that you may find interesting. Basically, Warner Brothers is green-sick with envy at the way things are blossoming for the marvel movies in production, and the way their own Superhero adaptations failed recently. The decision to appoint McG to helm the fifth Superman movie came because of the director's love of the character and the first two Donner movies, he was the only "real" committed and passionate Superman fan. There's nothing to support this report, since Superhero Hype! hasn't even bothered to at least tell us they have reason to believe him, so just keep that in mind. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]041602162459 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Superman Will Fly! [an error occurred while processing this directive]Felicity creator J.J. Abrams who had been handed the assignment to write a new version of Superman for Charlie's Angels helmer McG, admits to thinking about a Clark Kent with a lot going on inside his head, quelled some fears recently on E! Online. "Superman will most definitely fly," he said, "and there'll definitely be a suit." [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]040602155810 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Jor-El Like Advise for Superman 5 & New Smallville DVD Info [an error occurred while processing this directive]Entertainment Weekly posted a new article, 'Brand of Steel,' which discusses some paths for the next incarnation of Superman to take. Here's a clip:
The (other) nugget I am about to drop is about the casting of the star to play Clark Kent/Superman. A McG choice, WB are set to offer (the role) to Brendan Fraser [The Mummy, The Mummy Returns]. There is also the possibility that Pinewood Studios will be used to film the movie.
Warner Bros. presumably wanted McG because of the comic-book sheen he gave ''Charlie’s Angels.'' He created an unreal but stylish world of bright colors and improbable events, exploiting every bit of camp value inherent in the TV show's dated premise. But the director would be ill-advised to try the same trick with Superman. Also, the Smallville pilot will hit DVD on June 4th with Dolby Digital 5.1 sound; Audio Commentary by Producers Alfred Gough & Miles Milla and Pilot Director David Nutter; Interactive Map of Smallville; Storyboard to Screen and Trailer. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]032402223351 [an error occurred while processing this directive]J.J. Abrams Talks New Superman Movie [an error occurred while processing this directive]Edward Gross at ComicFlicks.com recently interviewed J.J. Abrams, creator of the television series "Felicity" and "Alias," and screenwriter of such films as "Armageddon", about the upcoming Superman movie to be directed by McG ("Charlie's Angels"). Here's some of the info:
What's the approach to the material?
What's nice is that after a lot of years of trying to get this going and not succeeding, everyone's coming at it with a very fresh, open mind. What's exciting for me is that we've got some incredible, really big ideas that go beyond just the one story we're telling. ALIAS has actually been an amazing training ground for me. In this Superman we're talking a lot about where he's come from and where he's going. I can't talk about specifics, but I can tell you that there are a lot of exciting, big ideas. I think it's Superman for everyone and not just for people who already know the character. Its for the uninitiated. The interview goes a little more indepth and even address Jon Peter's love loss for Superman. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]031202184659 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Who'll Be the Man in Tights? [an error occurred while processing this directive]According to the Filmink magazine, David Boreanez (Buffy: The Vampire Slayer's Angel) may be slipping in the red tights for McG's Superman, which is in early script stages with J.J. Abrams pushing the pen. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]022002163126 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Superman, Where Are You? [an error occurred while processing this directive]MSN has posted an article entitled '"Superman" Revived. Again.' MSN goes over reports of McG's attachement to direct Superman V, and does a short-short history lesson of Kevin's Superman Lives script and the whole Tim Burton fiasco. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]021702180337 [an error occurred while processing this directive]McG's Superman Not a Sure Thing [an error occurred while processing this directive]Batman On Film received word this morning that even though McG got the Superman gig, it is not a done deal that the movie is going to be made. Like all the other attemps, McG and his team are going to develop a script and then show the studio what they have came up with. Then they'll see what happens. Now even if it does--and there IS going to be a SUPERMAN film sometime--it does not mean the end of the proposed Batman/Superman team-up. That still could happen as well as Batman: Year One. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]021402155213 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Superman Director Confirmation [an error occurred while processing this directive]Today's issue of Variety confirmed earlier reportas that Joseph McGinty Nichol is now indeed the director of the next Superman film. J.J. Abrams (Joy Ride) is now the new screenwriter working on the project. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]021002163128 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Spider-Man & Superheros [an error occurred while processing this directive]Hollywood Reporter published an article about new actors needed for the action-arena.
Look no further than the casting of Tobey Maguire as "Spider-Man" for proof of just how much the action hero paradigm has changed. His role as the web-slinging crime fighter is a far cry from his earlier work in such character-driven dramas as "The Cider House Rules" and "Wonder Boys," but it is that dramatic background that convinced Sony to offer him the role. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]020702154414 [an error occurred while processing this directive]McG Signed to Direct Next Superman [an error occurred while processing this directive]From a source Superman Cinema trusts, but make up your own minds:
"Tobey was the perfect Peter Parker because he's such a fine actor," Columbia Pictures president of production Peter Schlessel said. "He was able to play the nerdy-looking high school kid before the spider bite just as well as he was able to play Peter after the bite."
Heroes who are larger than life, whose powers seem over the top, no longer seem to be in vogue.
"Movies like 'Iron Fist' are not about a dominant super-powerful hero but rather about a guy people can relate to with special skills," said Patrick Gunn, executive vp at Artisan. "Action movies have become as much about watching someone become a hero as they are about what happens once they are a hero."
That transformation of a "regular" person becoming a hero is one that studio execs believe might especially resonate now in the wake of recent events.
"It's a new world now," said Emmerich, referring to the evolution of th e image of heroes. "On Sept. 11, we saw thousands of civilians go to work one morning and suddenly be caught in the center of a war."
These changes in the concept of heroism have led some industry veterans to believe that the traditional Stallone/Schwarzenegger-type action film might fade out of the Hollywood landscape much the same way that Westerns have.
"We might see someone emerge as the next action hero, but it's also possible that we will not see those same kind of characters any more," Gunn said. "Those guys had their time, but now it's a different time."
McG is signed. It's all under wraps. The studio is giving him a limited amount of time to get the project on track. If he fails, he is fired and STILL gets paid. Unbelievably stupid. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]011502164411 [an error occurred while processing this directive]Superman Release Pushed Back [an error occurred while processing this directive]Upcoming Movies lists Charlie's Angels 2's release date as June 20, 2003. Director Joseph McGinty Nichol, who's confirmed to direct the Charlie's Angels sequel, is also attached to the upcomming Superman film, pushing any speculated release date of 2003 highly unlikly. This is also the same date that Universal has set it sights on releasing their Hulk movie.[an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]121301072536P[an error occurred while processing this directive]Superman (& a Li'l Batman) Updates [an error occurred while processing this directive]This is direct quote from the January 2002 issue of Premiere Magazine, about the status of the long-delayed Superman movie in development at Warner Bros.:
I am a bit afraid to let this information out, as it isn't good. While the upper management at Warner is pleased they were able to hire McG because he has "had a big hit", lower level people, the folks that care, are growing increasingly concerned because the director is taking a music video approach and doesn't seem to understand that the story is so very important. This is shaping up to be more TOMB RAIDER than [Richard] Donner's SUPERMAN in the execution. :-(
One rumor is that he will be incompetent enough to get fired, but that means he gets paid his multi-million dollar salary. All this pay or play stuff comes out of the budget and eventually, there will be no money left for the film. Currently, they estimate they need 170 million to make the film. The studio says they will get 100 million.
"(Jon) Peters, though, has kept pressing. 'Charlie's Angels' director [Joseph McGinty Nichol] has been signed, and Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Lopez, and Catherine Zeta-Jones have asked about the role of Lois Lane. But nothing will happen until there's a new script, and as of the fall, there was still no new writer attached.
"Director Wolfgang Petersen ("The Perfect Storm") is developing another film, this one pairing Superman and Batman. 'It will show the duality between a brooding Batman and an innocent Superman,' says Petersen. Writer Andrew Kevin Walker ("Se7en") was scheduled to deliver a first draft of the script last November.
"Don't expect to see either of these projects before the summer of '03 -at the earliest. But with the success of Warners' 'Smallville' this season on TV, an adolescent version of the Man of Steel could eventually wind up on the big screen.
"'Just imagine what you can do in a post-'Matrix' world,' says Miles Millar, 'Smallville' co-creator. 'You can show Superman flying faster than a speeding bullet. It's worth waiting for.'"
Superman Cinema has posted some interesting comments, though you might have heard some of it before:
"John Peters would be the death of superman."You can check out some more info on Peter's "vison" of Superman at People Against Jon Peters. In the mean time, Ahem has produced another f/x article, this one is all about Superman 2, 'Warner Bros. could learn something from Universal.' [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]121201074252P[an error occurred while processing this directive]Superman Update [an error occurred while processing this directive]WB is making more progress on Superman Lives. Scribe Scott Rosenberg is rumoured to have been offered scripting duties on this and the ability to chose whatever story he wishes. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]112101080604P[an error occurred while processing this directive]Word on Superman 5's Next Director [an error occurred while processing this directive]Coming Attractions reports that director Joseph McGinty Nichol has now committed to directing Charlie's Angels 2 for Columbia Pictures. Nichol is reportedly attached to direct the next Superman movie, if he is to direct, this would push any starting date back at least a year for filming, not to mention any post-production. Also, the studio has turned its attention to signing Drew Barrymore for Charlie's Angels 2, who's currently working on the new Barbarella flick. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
[an error occurred while processing this directive]101201043015P[an error occurred while processing this directive]Superman 5's Next Director? [an error occurred while processing this directive]Coming Attractions reports:
I actually worked with people very close (And in high positions) in Superman lives. I saw Nick Cage in the Outfit etc...
During that period I saw many things, The design and storyboards for Metropolis were incredible and ILM flight tests were promising. Visually, it was looking up to be a great film. John Peter's role as producer hindered most of the creative process. He wanted Superman in Corduroys at one portion of the film. He wanted Superman to lose his powers just so he could fly a Superman space ship (More merchandise to sell..etc)
I plead that your website in no way supports Jon Peters. He is the reason Burton left the project and why they couldn't get a nice script [What about Kevin Smith's?]. I hope that John Peters has nothing to do with Superman.
I would spend time in the art department building on the main Warner Bros lot. It was there that I saw most of the design of the film. Metropolis was amazing. The concept was similar to the animated Superman series. The building where huge and possessed a very clean almost chrome surface.
There were 3 designs of the Superman outfit that I saw. 2 were horrible. There was an endoskeletal suit that was to provide Kal-El with protection and strength when he lost his powers. Maybe some would like it but I felt it was too Batmanish. The other one was close to the classic design but it was too.....Flash gordonesck. It would be dated within a few years.
My favorite was the one they actually constructed for Nick Cage. It was the classic outfit without the red undies sections. The material was very cool.
It was a silicon material (Not latex) that fit to his form very well. I was really surprised of his physical shape. The best way I can describe the outfit is a protective skin around kal-El. It possessed an organic look. The cape would drape like a roman centurion outfit. I really liked it. I liked the fact that the outfit was not a sculpt of muscles. Rather than that, it looked like a person with muscles wearing something on top. Much more realistic.
Just when I was excited about what I saw, they put a long wig on Cage. He looked like Kevin Sorbos Hercules in a cape. Bad.
"The director is [Joseph McGinty Nichol]. This just happened. The search goes on for a plot and a writer [Attanasio has been out for a while]. Warners is seeing a lighter, funnier 'McG'-style Superman, getting rid once and for all of the Death of Superman plot and all the Burton crap." ['Fox Foxy' up up and away.]The last I heard, Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes has proven his worth to the studio and the project may again be dropped in his lap. [an error occurred while processing this directive]
In case you don't know, McG was the director of last year's box office hit for Columbia Pictures, Charlie's Angels. Last we heard he was in discussions to direct that film's sequel, but then again that was months ago. In fact, this story that appeared on IGN FilmForce today informs us that McG is attached to direct a project titled Dreadnaught and has his own TV series in development. Unless something's radically changed in the past couple of weeks and is being kept under the radar, McG wouldn't have any time to commit to a new Superman movie.