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. Read More »


Elizabethtown actor Orlando Bloom was spotted discussing roles in the upcoming Superman Returns sequel (tentative title, Superman: The Man of Steel) with director Bryan Singer and producers Mindy and Jon Peters. Bloom’s ex-girlfriend Kate Bosworth played Lois Lane in the first film. So speculation has already begun over Bloom playing the Man of Steel.

But Brandon Routh is already signed on for the sequels, so I somehow doubt (and hope) they don’t replace him with Bloom. I could see the Pirates of the Caribbean star as either Brainiac or General Zod, but why?

Don’t Believe Those Superman Rumors

Alex Ross SupermanWhy are you guys listening to those stupid internet rumors anyway? This time even the people around Hollywood were spooked.

One of the big stories on Monday was that Warner Bros was considering dumping the proposed Superman Returns sequel altogether. Brandon Routh would instead star as Superman in the recently announced Justice League of America movie. A juicy rumor which we did not report because, well, it’s not true.

Even Variety today is slamming internet websites for reporting such nonsense.

“While the Internet is home to both news and pure rumor, the two sometimes get mixed up, said Pamela McClintock of Variety. “One thing is for sure, though: Superman isn’t flying off the Warners lot.”

So there you have it.

Superman to Return on Schedule

Superman Returns

Last week Bryan Singer signed on with United Artists to direct a World War II Dramatic Thriller, prompting many people to speculate that the Superman Returns sequel would be delayed. Variety reported it, we reported it. Well apparently that isn’t true.

“Filming will probably begin March, 2008, as was always planned from the beginning. The WWII film Bryan plans to shoot over the summer will have NO EFFECT whatsoever on the Superman sequel schedule,” explains Robert Meyer Burnett, who was behind all the behind-the-scenes material for Superman Returns (but is probably better known as the director of the geek classic, Free Enterprise).

So there you have it, direct from a guy who is already shooting the preproduction stages. Although its still hard to believe that Bryan’s new project will be shot and edited by March. And even if it is, doesn’t Bryan need time to focus on the preproduction planning?

Bryan Singer

It looks like comic book fanboys might have to wait a little longer for another fix of the man and blue and red tights. Variety reports that United Artists have greenlit Bryan Singer’s next project.

The yet-to-be-titled dramatic thriller is an ensemble mult-character story set in World War II. What is it about? We don’t have any idea. What we do is that the project reunites Singer with The Usual Suspects screenwriter Chris McQuarrie. So it’s probably going to be good, despite the blatant lack of red and blue tights.

Singer and McQuarrie took the project directly to United Artists heads Tom Cruise and Paula Wagner, who agreed to finance it almost immediately.

The new project begins production this summer. Best case scenario, the Superman Returns sequel could start shooting in mid-2008. I doubt Singer would go right from one movie to the next, especially considering the lengthy preproduction development process that is involved in a comic book movie. I could be wrong, but the June 2009 release date seems a bit unrealistic. Even Variety admits, “The film will delay Warner Bros.’ hope of mounting a sequel to “Superman Returns” in the near future.”