After Christopher Reeve had ended his turn as the Man of Steel in 1987, the Superman moniker was searching for a real future. We had Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, but that was camp TV akin to the 1960’s Batman series. And just how well after the 60s Batman show ended, Tim Burton came aboard to re-jigger a popular yet creatively faltering character with both Batman and…Superman.
In 1996, Tim Burton would begin pre-production on the infamous Superman Lives, with Nicolas Cage set to don the red cape and yellow briefs. The movie was killed in the production phases, and the tumultuous journey was chronicled in the 2015 documentary The Death of Superman Lives: What Happened?
In an interview with PEOPLE, Entertainment Weekly and InStyle at the Toronto International Film Festival, Nicolas Cage commented on what the power of Superman Lives would have been like had the project lived:
“I would offer that the movie that Tim and I would have made, in your imagination, is more powerful than any of the Superman movies…I didn’t even have to make the movie and we all know what that movie would have been in your imagination. That is the Superman. That is the movie. Even though you never saw it — it is the Superman”
Before Jon Schnepp’s 2015 documentary, the idea of Nicolas Cage playing Superman was an utter joke for both Hollywood and the internet. Old images of Cage in suit and test footage from the ill-fated film still make their waves on the internet every now and again, but to have the confirmation from Cage that the movie would have been something beyond today’s Superman standards is quite special.
The legacy of Superman Lives‘ content still lives on in the DCEU. The ideas of the radically different suit, depicting the death (and hopeful rebirth) of Superman as he did in the comics, and the demand from fans to have Braniac in a future Man of Steel 2 all stem from what Tim Burton and Nicolas Cage were trying to pull off back 20 years ago.
Nicolas Cage’s new film Mom and Dad had its initial release at TIFF, and is set for limited release on September 24.
5 Ways To Make The ‘Shazam’ Movie Relatable & Engaging
The DC Extended Universe is set to expand to new heights in the next few years. Not only will we see the Aquaman hit the big screen this year, but we also have exciting movies like Dark Universe and Shazam! coming soon.
Shazam — a.k.a. Captain Marvel, though I doubt DC will ever call him that again — is a perfect character to bring to the big screen. The dark, gritty vibe of the DCEU works for characters like Batman or the Suicide Squad, but Shazam deserves something a bit more bright and lively.
The story of Billy Batson walking into a magical world and gaining both the powers of distinct mythical deities and the appearance of a strong adult, He-Man style, is perfect for the big screen. But, as with a lot of superheroes, the trick is making them relatable, and Shazam, with his magic and transformative powers, could be the trickiest of all.
Click the Next button and shout “Shazam” to find out the five ways I think Warner Bros. can make his movie relatable and engaging.