Moviehole spoke to “Superman Returns” co-writer Michael Dougherty this week (on our weekly podcast) who, although never officially onboard to pen the libretto for the follow-up, discusses what he might have done had he gotten the chance to.
Just two years ago, “Returns” director Bryan Singer was developing and planned to direct a sequel to the 2006 film. The first to admit that his first Man of Steel movie was a “romantic movie”, Singer promised a more action-heavy outing next time round.
‘’The first one was a romantic film and a nostalgic film,” he said in a 2008 interview. “I’ll be the first person to own up to that without making any apologies for it. I knew it was going to be that from the outset. And now that the characters are established, there’s really an opportunity to up the threat levels…Clearly there’ll be a body count [laughs]. From frame one, it will be unrelenting terror!”
Warner Bros never officially greenlit Singer’s follow-up though, nor had they assigned Dougherty and co-writer Dan Harris the task of scribbling down a story for it.
“There was never any official deal for the second one”, Doughety tells The Hole Cast. “There was always talk and whispers and stuff but nothing ever got off the ground.”
Had he gotten the call, the writer (now director; he helmed “Trick R’Treat”) says he would’ve introduced “Other Kryptonians – I’ll be purposely vague about that” into Supes’ world.
These Kryptonians “wouldn’t necessarily be evil right off the bat”, says Dougherty, “That’s too easy and cliché. I don’t think people just show up and they’re evil. In my mind, if the Kryptonians really were a space-faring race – which they obviously were – then it would only make sense that there would’ve been colonies and off-planet missions. So yeah, the possibility of other Kryptonians making their way to Earth seemed like a pretty big one in my mind.
“I think it’d be interesting to see how these other Kryptonians show up, land and have all these powers and [have to learn] how to adapt to them – when Clark got to grow up with [the powers]. Ya know… if you woke up with super powers tomorrow I think you’d have a pretty tough time adjusting to them”.
Dougherty might have also written “certain other classic villains” into his sequel.
“Brainiac was always interesting”, he admits.
One gets the impression that Dougherty really wanted a shot at penning the sequel , if only to right some of the wrongs of “Superman Returns”.
“ I feel like a lot of the stuff that we had taken out [of ”Superman Returns”] – either stuff that we had shot and got cut, or stuff that was cut from the script – could have helped [the film] more. I see all the potential that it had – I love action, so I wanted action, and I was the guy in the room who kept whining about wanting a super villain”.
Despite the disappointment in regards to the film, Dougherty has kind words for Brandon Routh, his film’s Superman, and believes there’s a possibility we mightn’t have seen the last of his Man of Steel. Regarding rumours that Routh may get another shot at playing the character in Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel” (due 2012), Dougherty says “I’m sure they’ll talk.. at least I’d like to think so”.
To hear the whole interview with Dougherty, who talks a little about the “Giant Robot Movie” with he’s making with Robert Zemeckis and his involvement in a flick that’s roots lie in a “Fairy Tale”, check out this week’s Moviehole Hole Cast.