So far, most of the promotional material and advertisements building up to the release of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice have understandably been focused on what is the main attraction, the film’s primary selling point. In other words, all the trailers, TV spots, and other forms of media have been the proverbial emcee, getting the crowd riled up before the title fight. So far, this promotional tactic has worked to the tune of Zack Snyder’s superhero grudge match raking in somewhere in the neighborhood of $25 million in advance ticket sales.
On the flipside, however, aside from a few brief glimpses at Bruce Wayne doing his best to convince Alfred war with the Man of Steel is the right choice, and Lex Luthor possibly having a hand in creating Doomsday, the marketing has played some of the character beats closer to the vest. Some of those beats have to do with Bruce and Clark for sure, but as a set of new featurettes primarily focused on Batman have to say, now some of those beats have begun to focus on characters like Lois Lane and Martha Kent.
In recent weeks, ads and interviews for Batman V Superman have slowly peeled away some of the film’s punchy veneer in favor of exploring more of the primary combatants’ motivations, as well as demonstrating just how large a cast this movie actually has. In addition, the film still has two of the most recognizable (if not the most recognizable) comic book characters in the history of the medium going at it for the first time in cinema history. As such, the two new featurettes offer up something of a smorgasbord for Batman and Superman fans alike when it comes to selling the finer aspects of the story that’s about to unfold; a smorgasbord that includes everything from Ben Affleck offering up his thoughts on the importance of the two characters to important supporting players, like Amy Adams and Diane Lane, explaining the sort of journey their characters will be on amidst all the fisticuffs presumably putting butts in seats.
The first featurette is the shorter of the two, and has Affleck describing the magnitude of having two “iconic characters of comic mythology” starring in the same film. He also goes into more detail as to where Bruce is when the film begins, stating it’s a new take on the character, one that the many Batman films haven’t seen before. Though the way he’s describing Bruce isn’t new to anyone who has been tracking the progression of BvS since it was announced, it is interesting to hear Affleck double down on descriptors like “older, darker” and “world-weary,” while Henry Cavill also chimes in, calling his adversary/future super BFF “brutal” and “unforgiving.” Say what you will about the movie’s tone and depiction of its characters, it is nothing if not consistent.
The second featurette is a little more involved, as it brings in nearly everyone from the primary cast to discuss their characters. Of course there are brief snippets from both Affleck and Cavill that fans will certainly eat up, but given the relative lack of attention that’s been devoted to Amy Adams’ Lois Lane and Diane Lane’s Martha Kent, getting some information from the two of them is something of a treat. In talking about her character and other prominent roles played by women, Adams states that Snyder has created “really complex female roles without buying into an archetype.” This should be encouraging for fans of Lois Lane and Adams alike, as it hints that BvS will have time for characters beyond Superman and Batman – an idea that’s seemingly corroborated by Diane Lane, who speaks of Martha Kent’s role in the film as having its own unique trajectory that ties into the ongoing development and maturation of her son.
The wait for Batman V Superman is nearly over, and although these featurettes are merely selling a film most fans are already likely to see, it is encouraging to hear these actors talk about their characters in such specific ways. Of course, it will all come down to how well the film plays once audiences can finally get their eyes on it, but until then, most die-hard Batman and Superman enthusiasts aren’t going to complain about these celebrities giving such a potentially huge film an extra sales push.
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice opens on March 25, 2016, which is followed by Suicide Squad on August 5, 2016; Wonder Woman on June 23, 2017; Justice League Part One on November 17, 2017; The Flash on March 16, 2018; Aquaman on July 27, 2018; Shazam on April 5, 2019; Justice League Part Two on June 14, 2019; Cyborg on April 3, 2020; and Green Lantern Corps. on June 19, 2020.