Is This Batman V Superman Shot A Tribute To The Dark Knight Returns?

Zack Snyder's Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice isn't an adaptation of Frank Miller's epic graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns, but the film's roots are directly inspired by that comic story. So did Snyder hide an homage to the iconic cover of The Dark Knight Returns in the new film? Lets take a look.

Two minutes and fifty five seconds into the new Comic Con trailer for Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice we see this image of Batman hanging on a building as a flash of lightning hits in the background.

Batman v superman: dawn of justice

And here is the cover of Frank Miller's 1986 graphic novel The Dark Knight Returns:

The Dark Knight Returns cover

And here is a more direct comparison:

dark knight returns batman v superman comparison

Thanks to /Film reader ChaiKumar for pointing this out.

Zack Snyder has been very vocal over the years about wanting to adapt Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns. During the Watchmen panel at Comic Con 2008, Zack Snyder expressed his love for Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns, in response to a question about the more mature direction of comic book adaptations.

"There are a lot of other graphic novels out there, but I would love to see Frank Miller's Dark Knight made into a movie, but that's just me."

Later at that same convention during the Entertainment Weekly Visionaries panel, Frank Miller told Snyder "You can do it anytime you want to Zack". To which Snyder said he was making a note of Miller's response.

At Comic Con 2013, Zack Snyder announced that he will direct a Superman/Batman Movie Inspired by Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns.

It's official that we are going to make another Superman movie. And you say, Zack, what is the movie about? But you don't want me to tell you that. You want to go and see the movie. But I can say that maybe there's a single element that will be in the film that I could... help you out with. I was thinking about how to do that. I pored through the DC Universe to look for a way to tell this thing. We're writing the thing now, but I came across a thing I found that'll help you understand it.

He made the announcement by having actor Harry Lennix read this line, from Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns: "I want you to remember, Clark, in all the years to come, in all your most private moments, I want you to remember your hand at your throat. I want you to remember the one man who beat you."  That's Batman speaking to Superman from the end of Miller's story, and that quote blew the roof off Hall H. Watch this epic announcement here.

Snyder has since clarified that his Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is not a direct adaptation of Frank Miller's epic graphic novel, but inspired by it.  And looking at the new Batman V Superman trailer, you can see right away that Snyder is doing his own thing with this movie. But we know Zack Snyder loves to show homage, I mean, look at his very-faithful adaption of particular frames from Watchmen:

Miller's four-issue comic book miniseries, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, was first published in 1986. It has since become one of the most popular graphic novel/trade paperbacks of all time. It reintroduced Batman to the general public as the psychologically dark character of his original 1930s conception, and helped to usher in an era of "grim and gritty" superheroes from the mid-1980s to mid-1990s.

Set 20 years in the future, criminals run amok and a gang called the Mutants terrorize Gotham City as superheros are a thing of the past. Bruce Wayne has been retired from crime fighting for ten years following the death of Jason Todd, the second Robin. Despite Wayne's funding the rehabilitation of Harvey Dent (Two-Face), Dent returns to crime. Wayne dons the Batman costume again and apprehends Dent, but the populace debates whether Batman is a savior.