Man Of Steel's Fishing Boat Scene Was Unexpectedly Brutal To Shoot

In his 2013 film "Man of Steel," director Zack Snyder gave us the most realistic and human representation of Superman yet. Although it's a dark, gritty, and deeply controversial take on the otherwise colorful superhero, the film packs a punch thanks to its emotional complexity, giving us a Superman for the modern age. Henry Cavill is a terrific Superman, and his performance in the film always be memorable, no matter the number of Clark Kents waiting in the pipeline.

"Man of Steel" did a lot of heavy lifting. It was the first Superman movie in seven years after "Superman Returns" tried (and failed) to rejuvenate the franchise, as well as the film that launched the DC Extended Universe (RIP). In keeping with the darker tone of the rest of the film, "Man of Steel" also boasts some of the most intense — and destructive — superhero action scenes ever brought to the big screen, culminating in a finale that leaves Metropolis in ruins. Naturally, most of those sequences were pretty challenging to shoot — though perhaps none more so than the fishing boat scene that takes place near the start of the movie.

Man ... of tides?

Following its Krypton-set prologue, "Man of Steel" finds a grown-up Clark Kent (Henry Cavill) maintaining a low profile by tackling various odd jobs, including working aboard a fishing boat sailing amid rough waters. Most people likely assumed this scene was shot on studio set using green screens, but it turns out the sequence was actually shot on location near Vancouver Island in Vancouver. That also meant having to deal with some extremely unforgiving waters, as Zack Snyder explained during a May 2020 "Man of Steel" watch party hosted on Vero True Social's YouTube channel:

"[...] Even though you would say, 'Okay, it's moderate seas, it doesn't look that bad,' it was really rough, it was much rougher than it looks. Everyone got sick while we were shooting, not Henry. But everyone got sick, and we were trying to film this sequence, and we just went out to sea with a handful of people and we just started shooting. And it was fun to do, but it was slightly exhausting, but it was fun. You know, just this small group. John, of course, Clothier didn't get sick either. He's the camera operator, and he's really just a solid guy, there was just no chance he was gonna get sick. He lives on an island, so."

Henry Cavill's portrayal of Superman (aka Clark Kent aka whatever you prefer to call the Big Blue Boy Scout) — whether he's bearded and scruffy-looking while working on a fishing boat, leaping into action to save the crew members aboard a burning oil rig, or duking it out with General Zod in Metropolis — never ceases to be captivating. Although his planned return to the role has already ended before it could properly begin, at least we'll always have "Man of Steel" to revisit.