Nolan Says ‘Man of Steel’ Is NOT ‘Dark Knight’ Revisited

Published 2 years ago by , Updated February 16th, 2014 at 9:23 am,

Chris Nolan Man of Steel Dark Knight Comparisons Nolan Says Man of Steel Is NOT Dark Knight Revisited

From the first moment Christopher Nolan was reported to be executive producing (or, ‘overseeing’) Zack Snyder’s Superman reboot Man of Steel, the rumors that the big blue Boy Scout would be ‘Nolan-ized’ ran rampant. Fans and critics of the director’s Dark Knight Trilogy were split on whether a darker, more grounded tone was right for Superman, or simply misguided.

Now Nolan has explained that for all his pride in bringing Batman into the modern world, he’s not the one directing Man of Steel; Snyder is. And while there may be similarities between their approaches, Nolan maintains that this is Snyder’s film, through and through. But that doesn’t mean he’s not every bit as optimistic about its potential to bring something new to the character.

The direct comparisons between Nolan’s darker, more contemplative and brooding version of the Batman mythos and the modern re-telling of Superman are easy to understand. Nolan’s artistic vision was the most commercially successful in the realm of superhero movies, clearly showing that the world was ready for something a bit more grounded.

Since then, The Dark Knight‘s type of ‘edginess’ has been pointed to as part of Snyder’s pitch for the film, with the director (known more for visual theatrics than heart-wrenching drama) calling his approach to the Last Son of Krypton as nothing if not ‘serious.’ With Nolan executive producing, and David S. Goyer stating that he and Nolan are trying to do for Superman what they did for Batman, Snyder’s significance has been somewhat downplayed.

Christopher Nolan The Dark Knight Hospital Set Nolan Says Man of Steel Is NOT Dark Knight Revisited

Speaking with The Playlist, the question arose of whether Man of Steel was written and directed along the same lines of the Dark Knight trilogy. Nolan acknowledged that the comparisons are fair – but reminded us that he’s not the one in charge:

“Well, somewhat…But I wouldn’t want people to think we’re doing for Superman what we did for Batman.”

“It’s very much Zack’s film and I think people are going to love what he’s done…I think it’s really remarkable to take on that character. Superman is a completely different character than Batman. So you can’t in anyway use the same template. But David Goyer had this, I thought, brilliant way to make Superman relatable and relevant for his audience. Zack has built on that and I think it’s incredible what he’s putting together. He’s got a lot of finishing to do on that. Superman is the biggest comic book character of them all and he needs the biggest possible movie version which is what Zack’s doing. It’s really something.”

With Snyder recently hinting that Man of Steel could in fact usher in the arrival of the Justice League, it can’t be long before Nolan’s name is again brought to the forefront of discussion as to who should shepherd the DC movie universe. The cagey director repeated previous statements – mainly, that he has said goodbye to his Batman and never intended the closing of TDKR to be open-ended for the sake of sequels – but those looking for some hope to cling to, can continue:

“Well, as I’ve said, and I’ll say definitively again, I am done with the Batman films, the trilogy is completed. It ended in the manner we had envisioned…I’m producing Superman now and I’m enjoying time off and taking a break.”

Is his refusal to flat-out deny that he would consider overseeing Warner Bros. and DC’s endeavors a sign he may be coming around, or simply that he’s tired of repeating himself? It’s impossible to tell, but until the studio hires someone else for the job, we’re sure rumors will persist. Fans can watch the behind-the-scenes offerings of this week’s Dark Knight Rises Blu-ray in hopes of finding some indication of Nolan’s plans, but we won’t be holding our breath.

For now, we can’t help wonder if the comparisons between the two franchises might be working in Man of Steel‘s favor. Being compared to the most critically-acclaimed superhero saga in modern times isn’t an insult, but the questions over the tone and feel of Snyder’s Superman (as directly related to Nolan’s Batman) have kept doubts about Snyder’s abilities largely quelled. There’s still some skepticism, but having people cautiously optimistic about the mind behind SuckerPunch, 300 and Watchmen being entrusted with Superman is an accomplishment in itself.

There’s reason to have hope in a movie offering a seriously threatening villain, a lead actor who apparently simply is Superman, and a director who knows how high the stakes really are. The next sign of what’s to come will be seen in the new Man of Steel trailer ahead of The Hobbit, and we’ll keep you updated as news arrives.

Man of Steel will be in theaters on June 14, 2013.


Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

Source: The Playlist

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  1. I feel like Nolan is very sneaky. He uses his words wisely. He says he will not make another BATMAN film but JL isn’t just BATMAN. Idk I could be over thinking but I still feel like it is a possibility Nolan will in someway help with the JL movie.

    • Agreed. Was thinking the same

    • @ Mike

      Of-course. It seems to me Nolan is WB/DC’s golden goose sorta speak. What CBM can they make without him that would bring in money?

      • Well if they had a clue what they were doing, they could make money on virtually any character without Nolan. They made very poor decisions on Green Lantern, Jonah Hex, and others.

  2. Personally, I think He really wants to move on. His talent is what makes ppl associate himsel with it but hey, you never know what a paycheck might do… Let Zack be Zack and Nolan Be Nolan… :)

  3. Aren’t they doing Inception 2?

    • not sure but it will be awesome

    • I hope not.

    • I haven’t heard anything that would even suggest a sequel to Inception is being considered. Do you have a source?

      Plus, making a sequel would totally discount the ending. (Read Kofi’s article on the Inception ending, it’s fantastic).

      • Wb would really like him to do it but he said no

    • I wouldn’t mind seeing a prequel to Inception, or maybe a spin off starring Tom Hardey (the movie did hint that he’s had a lot of experience in the “dream world”).
      But a sequel? No thanks, that would just ruin the magic of Inception’s terrific ending.

      … I doubt anybody’s working on it though. I can’t imagine Nolan would go for it.

  4. I think Nolan just wants a break from superhero movies for now, but I wouldn’t mind him doing a justice league movie

  5. Wonder if they’ll do everything 300-esque and have awesome slo-mo shots of Superman.

    I actually enjoyed “300″, not gonna lie. But the slo-mo was overused and thats the biggest gripe for me

    • No shame in admitting that you liked “300″, as many, if not most, of us did. IMO, it was a masterpiece, in that almost every single frame could be made into a painting/poster. Visually stunning, and the story was well told.

      • One of my favorite things about 300 is the shot for shot recreation of images from the comics.

        • ^^This times 1000^^

        • I’m not into softcore gay porn masquerading as an action movie. Is 300 as appealing as your Hunky Firemen calendar?

          • Just because you have a fireman calendar doesn’t mean everyone else does. Projecting sexual insecurity onto everything isn’t healthy.

          • Meet The Spartans was the parody of 300.

        • Yep, there was nothing wrong with 300…awesome movie.


          There is some leaked info about Superman fighting Zod, slow mo punching, slow mo rockets hitting Zod et cetera…google it if you want.

          • I like the slo-mo. But for those that dont lets not blame Hollywood today for the slo-mo effect lets go back to the 70′s and blame The Six Million Dollar man for the slo-mo effect. Every time he busted out his bionics it was slo-mo-gasm.

            • @Ed

              dude, I am a fan of the original six million dollar man and the bionic woman series of the 70s. I liked Max, the dog who was also bionic, too. I used to check them out on youtube. Those shows were excellent. I even liked the newer version NBC had on a few years ago, which they later canceled. I just thought they might have picked the wronged actress to play jaime summers though.

    • If you’ve ever seen any Superman cartoon, almost every time he does anything “super,” it’s shown in slow motion, so this movie is perfect for Snyder :)

      • Um, no. Modern visuals like slow mo and filming with a washed out, desaturated look is part of the reason why modern films suck balls. It was fun to see in the Matrix, but I think slow mo has been grossly played out.

    • I actually just watched “300″ once I mentioned it and I guess the slo-mo doesn’t bother me too much. But with Superman, I don’t want it constantly used like “300″ because I don’t see how it fits besides doing something extremely extraordinary.

      “300″ slo-mo captured the brutality and fighting style of the Spartans, “Man of Steel” slo-mo could capture the reason he is called Superman :)

  6. I think Snyder can pull this off, he’s a great director. Dawn of the Dead was entertaining, 300 was epic, Watchmen was fantastic, and I thought Sucker Punch was pretty good.

    • you forgot Guardians of Gahoole

  7. I have a feeling, from both the teaser trailers and the recent poster, that Superman will be presented more as a Christ-like, suffering, savior figure than a “dark knight” with a raspy voice…

  8. Thank god ! I’m not a fan of Nolan’s Batman movies…sorry Nolanites…but his Batman didn’t do it for me.I’m truly hoping Zack makes this movie his own. He is great at what he does…Enjoyed all his movies except for SuckerPunch. Visually, a good movie…storywise…it sucked. Watchmen, 300…are my faves until Man of Steel puts it on the top of my list of Zack Synder films.

    I wouldn’t want Nolan on a JL movie period. Bring in new blood. They are other, far talented directors out there like Speilberg, and Robert Zemeckis, Richard Donner,also Katheryn Bigalow( For anyone who hasn’t seen THE HURT LOCKER,STRANGE DAYS…Personally, I think it’s by far her best)

      • Yea, “new blood” would be guys like Duncan Jones (Source Code), Josh Trank (Chronicle), Rian Johnson (Looper), and Neill Blomkamp (District 9). I don’t think they’d all be great fits for JLA, but they’re all promising young action directors.

      • Yeah i dont see any directors named taking on a superhero film. Bigelow will continue her middle east war movies, robert zemeckis is super old and rarely does films anymore. And spielberg is lined up for a while. Now rian johnson and duncan jones i see.

    • It’s always an interesting indicator of maturity when someone first impulse is name calling at the earliest opportunity.
      In any case, everyone has the freedom of choice to like his Batman films or not. I do, and consider myself a big fan of his. I’m glad to read his comment, and I like that he’s giving Snyder all the respect and credit he deserves. That’s more than the fans afford each other, sadly.
      For Justice Leage, I doubt there’s much interest on his part. I’d prefer he moved on to better things as well.

  9. I think from the beggining Nolan it’s going directed “Man Of Steel”, but i he not. The dramatic feeling of “The Dark Night” is the thing Superman needs to be a real epicness Superman, no necesary the darkly atmosphere. The history is from Nolan and Goyer and that’s very good for me. But Snyder it’s gonna turn Superman simple a big-money and excesive-effects movie with nothing especial. Just a another superhero action film like “Green lantern” or “Thor”. The screenplay is from Goyer and that sounds great, “Batman Begins” is writted by Goyer. Well, i don’t wanna a new “The Dark Knight…just a Superman with that amazing artisitic and epicness form…the only thing i have is wait too se the work of Mr. Snyder.

    • Sorry The Bad English XD.

  10. “Snyder’s significance has been somewhat downplayed.”

    I already know this. Watchmen told me never to offer anything this guy makes any kind of respect. Which is a shame as my mother always tells me stories of myself watching ‘Superman’ when I was a kid and trying to convince everyone that Christopher Reeve was winking at me and me alone.

    Sigh. I know it’s not a popular view and I accept criticism for having the view, but Snyder’s ‘Watchmen’ was an absolute blanking disgrace.

    Feet stomping over.

    • In what universe was ‘Watchmen’ a disgrace??? Lol, that’s the most absurd comment on this talkback.

      • Agreed, Watchman is brillaint!!

    • It was true to the graphic novel. Its all u can ask for in the film adaptation. Have you even read it? Pretty close as far as the translation can be. From the mediums.

    • “Watchmen” was the graphic novel on film…with a couple of improvements. How is that a hodgepodge?

      Perhaps, you simply didn’t like Alan Moore’s maxi-series, in the first place…?

    • yes, and this mixed with writers who can’t write a good story will make MOS a total disaster.

  11. i think zack knows exactly what he has and what he has to do – i’m optimistic about MOS.

    OAN: How much money do you guys think WB has offered Nolan to ‘godfather’ their DC universe??

    • @ Johnny

      If i was rich, id bet every cent i have that the thought hasn’t crossed WB’s mind of Nolan to Godfather their DC universe in one way or another. Whether this film or that film. Ain’t Nolan gonna be involved with the Batman reboot aswell? That tells ya he isn’t moving on after TDK trilogy. I wished i could be optimistic as most on here but i feel WB wants to Nolanize every DC hero in some way or form. MOS is just the beginning, but i wonder is WB willing to expand their universe as Marvel plans? Because if they do,most of DC’s heroes are harder to sell to be more gritty,realistic or however you wanna put it as Batman & Superman seem a piece a cake.

  12. Personally I have no idea why some people are skeptic towards a film being overseen by Nolan and directed by Snyder, both are awesome, and personally I think Snyder is way underrated, his films are great, and he knows how to tell a story through the visuals and not necessarily through dialogue, and he’s proven in the realm of adult comic books adaptations. He’s largely frowned upon because of “Sucker Punch”, which personally I thought it was beautiful, it just wasn’t for everyone
    My bet is that “Man Of Steel” will be the best Superman film to date

  13. Inceptions 2 was a rumour banded about after Inception was released but it was never confirmed by Nolan as being on the cards.. Plus like a previous poster quite rightly said it would negate the ending of Inception to have a sequel. After he has taken his break I look forward to whatever he directs next especially if its original material like Inception or The Prestige…

    • I hope he doesn’ t rush back too son. Needs to take his time.

  14. “Well, as I’ve said, and I’ll say definitively again, I am done with the Batman films, the trilogy is completed. It ended in the manner we had envisioned…”
    Sadly Mr. Nolan, yes, you’ll definitely be saying it again… many, many times because it seems some of your fans just can’t get it through their thick skulls that you’re done with that great trilogy/story/character.

    As for MoS. I still have my reservations about Snyder. He’s a very hit-n-miss director IMO and there’s often very little substance or depth to his great, flashy effects…

    I’ll hoping for the best though :)

    • @ The Avenger

      It doesn’t seem like he’s done with Batman if he’s gonna be involved with the next reboot. Kinda seems he’s picking which DC film to be involved with to which he seems fit in the the future if WB wants him.

      • @WallyWest:

        You keep on referencing how Nolan is going to be involved in the Batman reboot. But I don’t ever recall him saying that. Do you have a source?

        • About a year and a half ago he said that he and his wife would be producing the Batman reboot (it’s all over the web so a quick google search should give enough reference), but I’m starting to doubt if he will in fact end up producing.
          Like I said, it’s been a long while since that news broke, and lately he’s been pretty adamant about moving on to other things soooo…

          • Hmm, so I just googled it and this is what I found:

            Back in March of 2011, Jeff Robinov (President of WB) said that Nolan and Emma Thomas will be producing the Batman reboot. Nolan himself did not say this, nor did he confirm it. Just the word of an executive back when TDKR was still in pre-production.

            However, since then, Nolan has stated several times how he is done with the Batman character for good. He has said this many times, specifically around the time of TDKR’s release.

            So, unless Nolan himself says something differently, it’s safe to assume he’s NOT going to be involved whatsoever with any Batman reboot.

            • @ Ezra

              Yea, and while MOS was in developement Nolan talked like he doesn’t have anything to do with Snyder’s film but he & Goyer are it seems like as Nolan is producer & you notice people on here feel a chance of hope knowing Nolan IS involved with MOS no matter how much the guy tries to discredits himself from the project. Obviously, Nolan says one thing then says another.

              • @WallyWest:

                While it’s possible Nolan didn’t talk so much about MOS in public when it was in development, that’s not that strange, because he was busy with TDKR. But I’m fairly certain that Nolan never flat out denied his involvement with MOS, nor did he ever say that he would never be involved with a Superman movie ever. There’s a big difference between not talking about something, and denying your involvement in it.

                On the other hand, he has flat out said several times in interviews that he is completely finished with Batman and will not be involved in any more Batman movies.

                Sure, it’s possible he’ll be brought on as some sort of producer and/or creative consultant, but as of now, he’s denying any involvement with the Batman reboot. Heck, we don’t even know IF the batman reboot will be happening, or if they want to continue with JGL.

            • Why bother googling it when I gave the links? Silly goose!

              BTW your logic here is pretty iffy… the president of Warner Bros. would be “in” on what was happening with film production, given that it’s a Warner Bros. film and they even own DC Comics. Saying “oh it’s just an executive saying it” doesn’t make it less credible, it makes it more credible. Most of the time studio execs are very careful about what they reveal so if he said it, it was true at the time.

              Obviously it’s changed now, things happen in 1-2 years. but when the pres of wb said it, that’s a pretty damn good source.

              • @Ken:

                Ok, fair enough. It was the president of WB, so the statement was pretty big. But that was a year and a half ago, and we haven’t heard anything backing it up since. The only thing we have heard is Nolan’s denial. So maybe my argument wasn’t fleshed out so well, but I still stand by it. As you said, things change, and Nolan may have initially been signed on to do it, but then backed out when he decided he was tired with Batman.

                And regarding the links, I’m pretty sure we posted at nearly exactly the same time, so I didn’t see your links until afterwards.

              • Er, sorry… didn’t notice Ken posted the same article link :|
                Anyway, fact is: evidence is pointing towards Nolan being ready to move on to other things (“other things” meaning NOT Batman, and NOT Justice League)…

            • “So, unless Nolan himself says something differently, it’s safe to assume he’s NOT going to be involved whatsoever with any Batman reboot.”

              …Best news I’ve heard all day.

    • Fan boys internet wide are going gaga about MOS. It’s way over hyped, there are way too many sneak peak teasers, and it’s heavily promoted… IMO, this means that WB has little faith in the film. All the CGI and visual effects in the world will not make this a great movie. Since Nolan and Goyer essentially wrote the story, it will more than likely be crap… But the film will do well in the box office because most people only go to see movies for the effects these days.

  15. Gettin mighty tired of Nolan, Snyder and Goyer. nothing new from this crew, except the ongoing circle-jerk praising of each other’s brilliance.
    Hollywood needs a ferocious new crop of game-changing writers and directors.

    • Totally agree with this.

  16. Will the sequel be Man of Steel 2. Man of steel Rises. Superman: Rise of the Man of Steel?
    In all seriousness though, it should have been The Man of Tomorrow. that title would have made this legendary.

    • “Man of Steel” is a more familiar phrase among the general populace. People need to know that they’re going to a Superman film, as opposed to some futuristic thriller. For example, many people blamed SOME of the failure of “John Carter”, earlier this year, on the fact that the “of Mars” known to those familiar with the stories was missing in the title…inexplicably. “Man of Tomorrow” could easily become the title of a sequel.

  17. Yeah, but it’s Nolan’s story… which is just as bad.

    • I have to ask: Why all of this hatred now…on THIS thread which hasn’t really been active for a few months?


      • Why do people post on forums to begin with, is it because they are bored? Does it matter how long it’s been inactive? Why is it hatred when people post negative comments about a movie? Seems to me anyone who has something negative to say about MOS isn’t welcome here or any other MOS fan boy party site in your eyes… the real question is, Why do you care? Post your opinion and let others do the same.


  19. So I guess this makes Nolan a liar.

  20. The two movies are not even close. They should of let Nolan do it. I love the intricacy and intimacy of The Dark Knight trilogy and themes. Man of Steel is not even close. The Dad dies for a friggin dog come on. Why terra form Earth the Kryptonians could survive without doing this? Why not send some of the crew to get another genesis chamber and then try and smooth talk Superman to get just some of his DNA and make more kryptonians. No undercurrents at all. The lines are not as good, the movie is not as deep. They sent him to be the “bridge between two worlds?” How all of Kryton is dead to Jor El’s knowledge. Earth won’t make the same mistakes? Superman is gonna teach them 100,000 years of history in a lifetime? Wait slowly Clark has drank in the radiation and fained powers but Zod is just as tough in one day of exposure basically? Like I said plot holes among plot holes and not as character based. A cheap knock off of The Dark Knight Trilogy. Somewhat more introspective but not even close in comparison. The truck that said Lex Corp was like the only thing that was cool and Lois hinting that the terra forming might cause superman to be more weak maybe alluding to Kryptonite. What about everybody who saw Kent before he had on the glasses now they just are not gonna recognize him. I know it is a tough story to tell realistically but at least have the Dad die better and have Zod have some brains not just be a maniac come on.