In over 70 years of shared comic history they've existed mostly as reluctant friends, memorably coming to blows on several occasions. The bottom line is that Superman doesn't really like Batman at all, so it's worth wondering how he'd feel now that he's been saved by him.
Flush with the success of "The Dark Knight,""The Dark Knight," Warner Bros. has announced an ambitious slate of upcoming movies based on its DC Comics properties to be released within the next three years — notably a third Batman movie and a Superman reboot, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Announcement of the reboot — a complete reimagining along the lines of this year's "The Incredible Hulk""The Incredible Hulk" — comes two years after director Bryan Singer failed to capture public imagination with a conflicted take on the Big Blue Boy Scout, and nearly two months after the gritty, nihilistic "The Dark Knight" opened to record-breaking numbers.
So how will Warner Bros. turn Superman around? By making him even darker, Warner Bros. Pictures Group President Jeff Robinov told the newspaper.
" 'Superman' 'Superman' didn't quite work as a film in the way that we wanted it to," Robinov said of Singer's movie, which made just $215 million domestically. "It didn't position the character the way he needed to be positioned," he continued. "Had 'Superman' worked in 2006, we would have had a movie for Christmas of this year or 2009, but now the plan is just to reintroduce Superman. We're going to try to go dark to the extent that the character allows it."
In addition to a "Batman 3" and a new "Superman," Warner Bros. also plans to release two other comic book movies (not including "Watchmen""Watchmen") by 2012. Among the likely candidates for the big-screen treatment are the Flash, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern and, of course, the Green Arrow, whose film, "Super Max" takes place in a high-security prison for meta-humans.
Like rival Marvel Studios — who this year released the mega-successful "Iron Man""Iron Man" as well as "The Incredible Hulk" — Warner Bros. plans to release standalone films for all of its heroes with the ultimate goal of creating a super team-up, Robinov told the Journal. "The Avengers," a superhero consortium of Iron Man, Hulk, Captain America, Ant-Man and Thor, will get a release in 2011.
DC's analogue, "Justice League of America," which had been slated to open next year, will instead wait until after the next four films.
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