Warner Bros. and director Zack Snyder’s Superman reboot Man of Steel has been a giant question mark for fans for quite some time. We finally got our look at the first footage from the film at Comic-Con, and the general public was treated to a significantly truncated version of that footage by way of the film’s first teaser trailer. Noticeably absent were Snyder’s trademark slow motion and stylized camera movements, instead replaced by a grittiness and real world grounding reminiscent of one Christopher Nolan (which isn’t exactly a surprise given that Nolan is Man of Steel’s producer).
Though Snyder and star Henry Cavill took part in the Man of Steel Comic-Con panel, the director didn’t really talk much about his approach to the character at the time. Snyder has now spoken up a bit about his Superman in Man of Steel and why acknowledging John Williams’ classic score from the previous films wasn’t an option. Hit the jump for more.
At Comic-Con, the closest Snyder came to saying something of substance about the film was when he explained that they wanted to get away from Superman being “a big blue boy scout” and instead wanted to see him beat the snot out of people. Speaking with Total Film magazine (via The Geek Files and CBM), Snyder elaborate on this point:
“The big challenge is if you can make people feel ‘What would you do if you were Superman?’ That’s what we went out to do as far as we could. Superman’s always been this kind of big blue boy-scout up on a throne that nobody can really touch, so we tried to make him relatable.”
Speaking more about his approach to the character, Snyder said they wanted to start from scratch:
“We decided to act as if no Superman film had been made – even though we love the films that have been made… Superman is a big responsibility but I felt he needed to be reintroduced to a generation and I thought this was a great opportunity.”
Bryan Singer and composer John Ottoman famously incorporated John Williams’ theme from the classic Superman films into Superman Returns, but the 2006 pic was essentially a sequel to Superman II and not a reboot of the character. In pretending like no other Superman films have been made before, it makes sense that Snyder and composer Hans Zimmer would need to move away from Williams’ work:
“We had to say this is a Superman movie for the first time and you can’t then go ‘Oh, now let’s steal a little music’… So, yes it’s awesome music but Hans Zimmer is going to do something awesome.”
This is a bit of a no-brainer, but if you need further proof that Williams’ score doesn’t really fit with Man of Steel, check out this video where someone replaced the teaser trailer music with Williams’ Superman theme.
At Comic-Con, Snyder wouldn’t reveal any specific comics that Man of Steel draws from, but he insisted that they had “respect for the mythology.” He reiterates that comment to Total Film:
“We have great respect for the canon. I would say it is a clashing of stories and ideas. Superman is the king-daddy of all superheroes – to make him work is a big deal.”
I was definitely impressed by the footage screened at Comic-Con and I’m sincerely hoping that Snyder has put together one hell of a Superman movie, but I’m forced to remain cautious given the director’s resume. Doing something completely different from Donner and Singer’s films is certainly a step in the right direction, but Sucker Punch is still a thing that exists.