One of the first pieces of online film journalism to truly legitimize the profession was Drew McWeeny’s September 2002 evisceration of a J.J. Abrams script for a film eventually referred to as Superman: Flyby. McWeeny, then working for Ain’t It Cool News under the name “Moriarty,” ripped apart Abrams’ script so completely, and in such a public forum, that he is widely credited for killing the film. To this day, the piece is a fantastic read.

This was before Superman returned and before Batman began. At the time, Warner Brothers was hoping to reinvent their superhero franchises with filmmakers like McG and Brett Ratner. They couldn’t know that the man who would eventually revitalize Batman was already working for them or that their Superman screenwriter would do the same for Paramount and Star Trek years later. This wasn’t the J.J. Abrams of Mission: Impossible or Lost. This was the Alias and Felicity J.J. Abrams.

Years later, we’ve got a tiny glimpse at what might have been if Abrams’ script got made, as well as another huge “almost” in Superman movie lore. Special effects guru Steve Johnson, who was responsible for revealing the Tim Burton costume tests for a failed late Nineties Superman reboot, posted a gallery on his Facebook with concept art for different Superman costumes as well as some sketches of Doomsday, who apparently was being considered as a villain if director Bryan Singer got a second crack at the Man of Steel after Superman Returns. Check them out and more after the break.

First up is the Doomsday concept art. For anyone who isn’t aware, Doomsday is a character that was basically created to kill Superman in 1992 in the famous Death of Superman comic arc. I think these drawings look great and I’d still love to see Superman meet his match on film.

Next up are a series of drawings for costumes that were originally designed for the Abrams’ movie, then slowly progressed along to Bryan Singer’s Superman Returns before getting scrapped for what you eventually saw in the finished film. Check them out.

The one thing to remember is that concept art is just that – a concept. Chances are there were a million different versions of the Superman suit that were drawn just so who ever eventually signed on to do the project would have options. The amount of steps that it would have taken to get one of those costumes approved is insane. That said, costumes like this did make it to the test phase so anything is possible.

What are you thoughts on Doomsday in a Superman movie and the concept drawings above?

[via CBM]

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