With just under two months until the release of Man of Steel, fansites have been ablaze with posts wondering when the film’s online and TV marketing will kick in. Fandango’s list of summer film expectations leaves it all the way down at number six, after Iron Man 3, Star Trek Into Darkness, The Great Gatsby, Fast & Furious 6 and The Hangover 3, when by all rights it should at least be in the top three. But as that Joker once said, “It’s all part of the plan.”
Update: Check out the just-released trailer below
One word: super
Viral Marketing Campaign
Last week, the film’s official website started showing static, like the white noise on a TV without a channel coming in, but an image slowly appeared over the next two days. A number of intrepid fans discovered a number in the source code that was counting down to 8 p.m. EDT last Sunday. Many hoped that it would be the third trailer and would coincide with the MTV Movie Awards. Here’s what we got instead…
"You are not alone. My name is General Zod. For some time your world has sheltered one of my citizens. I request that you return this individual to my custody. To Kal-El, I say this, surrender within 24 hours or watch this world suffer the consequences."
As soon as that countdown ended and the video appeared, a second site became active at www.iwillfindhim.com with its own countdown beginning, but with Kryptonian numerals. Again, fans hope it will be the final trailer, but “fool me once…” If our calculations are correct, it will end at exactly 8:19 p.m. EDT Tuesday, April 16.
While this was more of a “trailer for the trailer,” what we can guess from the opening “You are not alone” is that one of the themes of Man of Steel will be humanity’s first contact with an alien race. Update: See the new trailer above.
Entertainment Weekly released a cover story and huge spread of interviews and pictures last week, including some minor spoilers. For instance, director Zack Snyder revealed that there will not be any Kryptonite in the film, which has already started a debate amongst fans. It actually makes perfect sense because he’s already up against Zod, Faora and an army of advanced robots, as well as the U.S. military. The need to exploit his greatest weakness simply isn’t there and would be better used in a sequel anyway.
In another section, EW interviewed Warner Bros. President Jeff Robinov, who spoke about the future of DC Comics films after Man of Steel.
"It's setting the tone for what the movies are going to be like going forward. In that, it's definitely a first step. I think you'll see that, going forward, anything can live in this world," he said. "[Nolan's] Batman was deliberately and smartly positioned as a stand-alone. The world they lived in was very isolated without any knowledge of any other superheroes. What Zack and Chris have done with this film is allow you to really introduce other characters into the same world."
Do not expect to see any other actual heroes this time out, but expect some Easter eggs, tidbits and references along the way, and possibly mentions of the DC universe’s other fictional cities.
More images from Entertainment Weekly’s coverage can be found here.
A few other credible spoilers have hit the Web.
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Lois Lane will apparently play a huge role in Clark’s decision to become Superman. She will know who he really is thanks to her investigative reporting skills. By the end of the film, she may be the one who suggests he put on the glasses and come to work at the Daily Planet.
Again, this makes sense for a realistic film, because it’s never easy to suspend disbelief about Lois not recognizing Clark is Superman, at least in live action.
Legendary Screening Reaction
Steve Weintraub of Collider sat down with Legendary Pictures CEO Thomas Tull for his reaction to seeing the finished Man of Steel film.
“It’s the Superman movie I’ve always wanted to see. I think the job that Zack Snyder did along with Chris Nolan- I think that people are going to be very, very excited about the results. The acting, on top of all the incredible action- Kevin Costner playing Jonathan Kent, Russell Crowe, Diane Lane, just the cast, and I think the job Henry Cavill did, people are going to really be excited about it. It was a privilege to be a part of and Warner Bros. does a phenomenal job of bringing these things to life, Batman and Superman, and it really is a privilege for us to be a part of.”
Composer Hans Zimmer Was Intimidated
CNN interviewed Hans Zimmer. In the piece, he explained how he got the job, why he procrastinated starting for a few months and what makes Man of Steel different from other projects he has worked on, like the Batman films.
Zimmer said he came to this understanding about director Zack Snyder's take on Superman (which reboots the series, instead of coming in at a later point à la "Superman Returns") because he was questioning how he would score the film and not remind audiences of John Williams' iconic fanfare theme. "Look, that was daunting," Zimmer confessed. "Seriously. He's the greatest film composer out there, without a doubt, and it happens to be one of his iconic pieces of music, so I spent three months just procrastinating and not even getting a start on the thing, because I was so intimidated: 'Oh my God, I'm following in John Williams' footsteps.'"
His way around this, he said, was to look at the Superman story in a "very different way." "I kept thinking of the story as, What if you are extraordinary, and your entire ambition is to join humanity? To become human? What does it mean to become human? What does it mean to be an outsider who really wants to join the human race?"
Effects Interview with WETA
Bleeding Cool News caught up with VFX Supervisor Joe Letteri of WETA to discuss how the effects will help make this film different from other superhero films and past Superman projects.
“I can’t talk too much about Man of Steel yet, and I haven’t seen the whole thing yet, but overall it’s the story that’s most exciting. It’s a nice re-envisioning of the story of Superman leaving his homeworld and coming to this new one. If you look at what Zack [Snyder] has done you’ll see that they’ve abandoned a lot of the pretense that was in the comics and asked ‘Can we still make this work?’ They’re sticking to realism as much as possible. Fantastic elements are still there but a lot of it that has been trimmed back to make it feel as though this actually happened.”
For more on the film’s special effects, look for a feature in SFX Magazine #235, available May 1.
One other rumor hit the Internet last week, which may be partially correct, but has once again caused a fan backlash. Although it’s unconfirmed, we’ll treat it like yet another spoiler. It concerns Superman's powers and his birth on Krypton.
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The rumor is that Superman has his abilities because on Krypton because Jor-El created him through an illegal experiment.
However, this may only be partly correct, especially since Zod and Faora wouldn’t stand much of a chance against Superman if they didn’t have their own superpowers.
This could be a nod to the 1986 “Man of Steel” comic book miniseries written by John Byrne, where Kryptonians fetuses were not carried by a mother, but developed in a birthing matrix. Kal-El was born from the Matrix just after arriving on Earth, which made him a natural U.S. citizen.
Something similar could be used in the Man of Steel film, although perhaps Jor-El and Lara get in trouble for having a child the traditional way. Or it could have to do with the Kryptonian Guild system and that only members of the Military Guild should have powers, while Jor-El is part of the Science Guild. Perhaps Jor-El manipulates his genes to be the ultimate Kryptonian with abilities from multiple Guilds.
Again, this is all speculation.
Are you excited for the final trailer? What would you most like to see?