Superman - McG To Direct New Film, Honest!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Peter Kline, Feb 14, 2002.

  1. Peter Kline

    Peter Kline Cinematographer

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    February 14, 2002

    WB's Man of Steel Flexing His Muscles Again

    By REUTERS

    Filed at 4:53 a.m. ET

    HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - Will Joseph ``McG'' McGinty be the director who can finally make ``Superman'' fly?

    The ``Charlie's Angels'' director has closed a deal to shoot the next installment of Warner Bros. Pictures' ``Superman'' franchise, with ``Felicity'' and ``Alias'' creator J.J. Abrams on board to write the script.

    WB production chief Lorenzo di Bonaventura has long vowed to revive the ``Superman'' saga as part of the studio's push to capitalize on its DC Comics characters. Not only does ''Superman'' represent yet another potentially lucrative franchise, but the studio has already sunk millions into the project and has yet to see a dime in return.

    Between 1996-98, Warners was dead set on getting the ''Superman'' franchise out of the phone booth and into the air, spending millions on scripts by Kevin Smith, Dan Gilroy and Bill Wisher.

    But with the budget spiraling toward $140 million and a script that still wasn't quite right, di Bonaventura pulled the plug on pre-production for ``Superman Lives'' in April 1998.

    While the move reflected fiscal prudence for a studio that had been walloped by ill-conceived films with bloated budgets, some damage had already been done. ``Superman Lives'' helmer Tim Burton and its star, Nicolas Cage, both had pay-or-play deals -- meaning they get paid even if the project goes ahead without them -- and neither is involved with the McG/Abrams incarnation of ``Superman''; the new team plans to start from scratch conceptually.

    Jon Peters, whose latest effort was Sony's very expensive ''Ali,'' will produce the mega-budget picture.

    ``Superman'' will likely be McG's next film after ``Charlie's Angels 2: Halo,'' which will begin production this spring. That film is a summer tentpole for Columbia Pictures, which has scheduled a June 20, 2003 release.

    McG is also executive producing the Fox TV action series ''Fast Lane'' with co-creator John McNamara. McG will shoot the pilot. He had also been attached to direct the Navy thriller ''Dreadnaught'' at Columbia, but that picture is taking on water after the events of Sept. 11 made it undesirable to make movies about exploding jetliners.

    Copyright 2002 Reuters Ltd. | Privacy Information
     
  2. Travis D

    Travis D Second Unit

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    No words.... just sorrow.

    Ok, I lied. I do have words. Will superman be lowered to Tom Green, Matrix spoofs, and BAAAAADDDD wire-fu? Damn! Although I felt that both Burton and Cage were wrong for the project, I can't help but feel that this is somhow worse. If only a bulked up Guy Pearce and M. Night Shymalan had been signed to the project.
     
  3. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

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    These are pretty horrendous choices for director/writer.
     
  4. paul o'donnell

    paul o'donnell Second Unit

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    Im managing to vomit and cry at the same time [​IMG] This is NOT good news to say the least.
    And so dies another Superheroes screen cred.
     
  5. mark_d

    mark_d Second Unit

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    I thought Superman's screen cred was pretty much as low as it could be, and I don't think there's anythingthat could be as bad as Quest for Peace.

    I will reserve judgement. There was definately a bright energy to Charlie's Angels, and if this follows a similar style (without Tom Green) it might not be all bad. I think there's room for fun, family oriented (as opposed to dark and brooding) superhero shenanigans. But then, I have no investment in Superman and I really enjoyed The Phantom.

    Slam Evil!

    Mark
     
  6. paul o'donnell

    paul o'donnell Second Unit

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    Yeah Mark you're right, Quest was god awful. Cred was the wrong phrase there [​IMG]
    What I meant was the big onslaut of super-hero films for the new generation (quite a few wont have seen IV: QFP). I just meant that yet another (the biggest) super-hero will have a new movie which does no justice to the essence of the character.
    But you're right to hold off judgement, we all should. But I must say I'm worried [​IMG]
     
  7. Jordan_E

    Jordan_E Cinematographer

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    Studio logic: CHARLIE'S ANGELS-Wire Fu SUPERMAN flies on wires! Guess it'll be a rental for me, unless they manage to get Diaz to perform her Amazing Swirling Ass Dance in Superman.
     
  8. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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    McG is untested. As fluffy and lite as Charlie's Angels was, maybe he's got some skillz. Not every superhero movie has to be brooding. Superman can be a fun movie, but only is the right balance is maintained. After my initial skepticism, I thought about it, and moved on to a more comfortable, long-standing skepticism.
    As for Jon Peters...he sucks. He couldn't even spell subtlety. Wrong, wrong choice. Abrams, meh? Kevin Smith was probably the right man for the job, but the big studio again couldn't understand a comic book movie that wasn't stupider than a Saturday morning cartoon. That was pre X-Men, before Fox proved that you could make a fun, intelligent comic movie. provided you had the right script, director, and cast.
    Superman is an American Icon. If Warner did it right, this could be really special (it was in 1979). Sadly, it looks like trendy beats timeless these days.
    You never know,
    Chuck
     
  9. Dan Brecher

    Dan Brecher Producer

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    Smith was still under preassure form Warner in regards to what they wanted from him out of a Superman script, as a writer or even writer/director he would have NEVER had full control. He knows his comic books, at the very least for this please god hire a writer who knows the comics well (fat chance), but Smith still couldn't resist throwing in his in jokes into his Superman draft. There was a kid in there briefly called Bank for crying out loud...
    Indeed, if you read Smith's last submited draft it really is pretty poor and his stories of meetings with warner execs who wanted Supes to battle a giant spider, never see Superman fly and wear that "stupid" outfit kind of sticks will remain in my mind for a long time. I wish the 3 real video clips of him telling the full Superman story were still online.
    I heard the McG news last month when it was in the planning stages and it disturbed me then. Now it's a done deal and I'm not confident. A Superman movie done right could thrill the western world in its current state, but I can't see beyond a flashy effects laden plotless romp with a music video director at the helm. If this is a superman movie that goes into full production (unlike the last attemppts) I will likely remain, uninterested. [​IMG]
    Dan
     
  10. mark_d

    mark_d Second Unit

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    Dan, your post implies that having been a music video director is a bad thing. I know I don't need to name now respected directors who cut their teeth on promos (be it music or tv ads).

    As someone pointed out earlier McG is an unknown quantity, and I personally know nothing about the writer(s?) so I will keep an open mind.

    Mark
     
  11. Bryan Tuck

    Bryan Tuck Screenwriter

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  12. Bryan Tuck

    Bryan Tuck Screenwriter

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  13. Bryan Tuck

    Bryan Tuck Screenwriter

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    Oops. Sorry about that.
     
  14. David Oliver

    David Oliver Second Unit

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    Maybe they should make it a Bizarro World edition of the Superman saga.
     
  15. TheLongshot

    TheLongshot Producer

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    Just as a note, Kevin Smith did have his hands tied somewhat with what he could do with a script. He was probably doing the best of what he was given. Anyways, I wouldn't want him to direct one. I still think his primary skills is his writing.

    I do agree with previous posters that McG is an unknown quality, which is why it is a worry. I wouldn't judge him solely on Charlie's Angels, since that was supposed to be camp and over the top.

    Personally, this at least sounds a step up from Tim Burton/Nicholas Cage. Those were the wrong people for the wrong film.

    Jason
     
  16. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

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    David Fincher started out directing music vidoes, so anything is possible, from humble roots and all...
     
  17. Chuck Mayer

    Chuck Mayer Lead Actor

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    Re: the music video/commercial director crossovers...
    While mark_d brings up a very good point, I have disliked most films by ex-"geniuses".
    For every David Fincher (actually, for the only Fincher), there are a baker's dozen of director-hacks. I don't think commercials and videos made Fincher...he made them. Many clones followed him with the "MTV-style," but it controlled them, not the other way around. But enough of Fincher...[​IMG]
    McG delivered a solid effort. Not great, but not awful. It's the behind-the-scenes studio-doings that have me worried. McG wouldn't even be on my long list of preferences, but nor do I dread him.
    Peters, though...
    Take care,
    Chuck
     
  18. Sean Bryan

    Sean Bryan Sean Bryan

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  19. Tom-G

    Tom-G Screenwriter

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  20. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
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    James Cameron's first feature film as director was Pirahna 2: The Spawning. His follow-up was The Terminator. David Fincher came out of music videos and commercials to make Alien 3 and then started making better movies. Skeptical wait and see mode is appropriate. There is not yet enough evidence to convict McG of being Michael Bay. [​IMG]
    Regards,
     

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