‘Man of Steel’ Director & Writer on What Has to Happen in ‘Man of Steel 2′

Published 2 years ago by , Updated June 23rd, 2013 at 9:41 am,

Man of Steel New Suit Close Up Man of Steel Director & Writer on What Has to Happen in Man of Steel 2

There may have been a time when Man of Steel seemed a risky proposition, but it has come and gone. While Zack Snyder’s Superman reboot is smashing box office records, the Hollywood rumor mill claims that Warner Bros. and DC Comics are already planning the next step.

Some reports claim that both Snyder and screenwriter David S. Goyer are already working on a sequel, but rumors of a Justice League film refuse to die. All the smart money rests on the studio moving to a Man of Steel sequel first, but as Snyder and Goyer have explained in recent interviews, writing that story won’t be easy; and any potential sequel means Kal-el will have to broaden his horizons.

Lest anyone believe that Superman’s duties to the world minimize the importance of his American upbringing, it is Kal-El himself who states in the film that he’s about as American as it gets. Clark Kent’s Midwest upbringing helps shape his character as both Clark and Kal, but now that he has emerged onto the world stage, his duties extend far beyond the United States.

Man of Steel Stars and Stripes Man of Steel Director & Writer on What Has to Happen in Man of Steel 2

As Snyder explained in an interview with BBC Radio 4, while the Man of Steel sequel may still be years away (or releasing next year, according to some) the director already knows how Superman’s responsibilities will be changing in his next feature film:

“He has no choice but to become global… That literally has to happen. But for me I was really interested in – and maybe it’s because Barack Obama’s president now – it’s okay for Superman to be American. He’s quintessentially an American creature and creation. I wanted to pay homage to the superhero as coming from the heartland of America, and the “Why?” of that.

“I was really interested in just how American he was, and I think in the best possible way, the Kevin Costner cornfield kind of way. Which is why I really wanted Kevin and Diane Lane to play those parts [Ma and Pa Kent] because they really represent a believable America but an America that is also… we do it in the most realistic way we can but still all of the icons are very much represented in a way that I don’t know exists for real. But you want it to. Like a Norman Rockwell documentary… handheld Norman Rockwell.”

At the risk of seeming exclusionary to any Superman fans from outside of America, it’s hard to disagree with Snyder’s claims that Clark Kent represent much about the homegrown, quiet character of the American farmer – a side to his character that comic book writers (and screenwriters) have tapped into for decades. And while Norman Rockwell never featured an airplane-strewn main street reduced to dust in his paintings of small town America, the quiet calm of Smallville serves its purpose in the movie as well as ever.

Kevin Costner as Jonathan Kent in Man of Steel Man of Steel Director & Writer on What Has to Happen in Man of Steel 2

Talk of a Man of Steel sequel may center on proposed villains in conversations among fans – and it’s hard not to, given the fact that Lex Luthor’s presence is felt, even if it’s never seen. But even if Lex is being bandied about by Goyer and Snyder, the screenwriter explains that dropping Superman into our modern world means several answers have to be answered before a ‘villain’ can be introduced.

In an interview with BleedingCool, Goyer claims that the challenges facing Superman are much closer to home:

“The challenge for us moving forward is how to depict Superman in a world like this, in a world where Twitter exists, in a world with social media. To me, the interesting challenge is “Could he solve hunger in the horn of Africa? What would he do with the Arab Spring? What would he do in Syria?… Does he have the wherewithal or the knowledge to intervene in something like this?”

To me, that’s the interesting challenge. It’s easier for Batman because he just exists in this little pocket of the world, he’s not violating sovereign airspace every day.”

As for which villain will be next to test Superman’s resolve…

“There is musing about Lex Luthor, conversations that Zack and I have had on set, but it all depends on what happens over the next month. There are obviously those Lexcorp easter eggs in the film and clearly you can see from that, to the extent to which we can intuit things about Lex, it’s not the Gene Hackman version. This is a Bill Gates-like Lex that is probably worth 50, 60, 70 billion dollars. It’s a very different Lex.”

Lex Luthor in Man of Steel  Man of Steel Director & Writer on What Has to Happen in Man of Steel 2

Although Snyder has set the record straight (numerous times) about leaving the door open for Justice League characters, it’s clear he thinks Superman needs more time to grow before joining the rest of humanity’s superheroes (for what it’s worth, star Henry Cavill agrees with him). Yet anyone paying attention to the numerous easter eggs and hints embedded in Man of Steel sees the seeds being planted for the future, specifically where Lex Luthor is concerned.

Luckily, Goyer did give a few more details on how this group of filmmakers will continue to change the nature of Clark’s ‘secret identity,’ but given that the quotes relate to certain spoilers for Man of Steel, those who have yet to see the film should stop reading now.








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  1. i don’t think lex is introduced enough to be a villain yet, sure there is an arguement that alien life is a threat but theres no way he can convince people superman is one yet after saving the world i can see him siding with brainiac or similar to put superman in a position where the world would hate him in the third film, bit like dark knight really. Think it may be time to bring out the power suit and doomsday too, doomsday with this sort of destruction would be epic

    • I agree I see more a Doomsday epic destruction ending with the death of superman and you could do a Funeral for a friend tie in too to introduce characters for a justice league movie and also get a guaranteed sequel to bring him back for the finale in the trilogy.

      • If he isn’t friends with the members of the Justice League or know them in that fact how do you tie them in…?

      • If he isn’t friends with the members of the Justice League or know them in that fact how do you tie them in?

      • That’s NOT a good idea. It’s WAY TOO EARLY TO DO DOOMSDAY! Doomsday is better off saved for a Justice League film. The entire Justice League was involved with fighting Doomsday, not just Superman. Besides, we already had a lot of destruction in the first “Man of Steel”. It would be better if they scaled the action back a bit and told more story. Save the massive action for the third film. In my honest opinion, the second film should have Lex Luthor as a side villain and Matallo as the primary villain. Then have Brainiac for the third film. After that, bring in Doomsday for an epic Justice League film.

        • David I think you should make them u have a good story boiling in ur mind I’m a writer and I was thinking the same thing

    • read Superman Secret Origins or Superman Birthright and then you will know how Lex can to a great extent damage superman and his reputation.

  2. How did superman save the world? As a direct result of him tens of thousands of people died in metropolis and more during his fight with Zod. Zod and his goons only came to earth because of him in the first place??

    • Zod wanted to remake the earth into a new Krypton and wanted him to join Zod but he refused, I think that qualifies. Zod had Krypton’s best interest. Superman had earth’s best interest since he was raised there. Story wise old-school elements are present.

    • Zod was trying to alter the atmosphere of the universe so that it would be inhabitable for Kryptonians. That would have made it uninhabitable for humans. So yeah, a lot of people died but *everyone* would have died otherwise.

    • He prevented further destruction when he beat Zod

    • Superman didn’t bring Zod there knowingly. How was he supposed to be aware that he would bring Zod there? There’s no way he could have known. Those people died because of Zod. Zod was the madman that basically wanted to destroy Earth and all her people so he could re-make Krypton. Superman was the one who stopped the world engine thus saving the entire planet and her people from extinction.

    • Metropolis took the bulk of the destruction unfortunately, but Superman DID save the world which was in danger including the entire populace. Now Iron Man he created his mess and his girlfriend mopped it up for him, saved his life and he took the credit. Superman? Superman saved the world.

      • I like the Iron Man movies, but twice now his girlfriend has had to save the day, making him the least effective movie hero ever.

        • the same happened with Thor 2, the climax tells us if Jane Foster and Erig Selvig weren’t there Thor couldn’t have stopped Malekith and malekith would have destroyed all the 9 realms.

    • It is very clear that no one was in the buildings while Superman was fighting Zod, he evidently told people to take cover and if he actually kill “thousands of people” don’t you think we would see several dead bodies. I personally think people just trying to attack MOS because they are just haters since in The Avengers, The Hulk smashed through several buildings but no one is commenting on that. Watch the movie again with a more opened mind, perhaps a lot of of you feelings will change.

      • It is very clear that no one was in the buildings while Superman was fighting Zod, he evidently told people to take cover and if he actually kill “thousands of people” don’t you think we would see several dead bodies. I personally think people just trying to attack MOS because they are just haters since in The Avengers, The Hulk smashed through several buildings but no one is commenting on that. Watch the movie again with a more opened mind, perhaps a lot of of you feelings will change. And the “lack of humor” are you kidding me! This wasn’t a comedy if that is what you wanted then you should have watch a comedy. Man of Steel was awesome!

    • When did superman kill thousands of people during fighting Zod?

  3. After all this Lex Luther talk, I want to ask you guys what you think Lex’s goal is, …rule the world, pure hate for an alien, is Lex really an evil man…Does the Man of steel appearance define who Lex is. If superman never appear, is Lex just another billionaire?

  4. I think lex Luthor would be great if they did him right. Lex Luthor is obsessed with power and superman is power he wishes he had. I think Lex can create distrust for superman by creating a superman clone like bizarro. If Lex is the main villain then it would be interesting if he created a villain for superman because in the comics lex Luthor created Metallo, Bizarro, and Parasite.

    • That’s a good angle and a good way to tie it in to comic lore. It would be awesome if he created at least two of those villains and tried to make Supes look bad. Lexcorp could be the OCP of Metropolis.

  5. If lex is going to be in the next one, who will play him,,?? any ideas submit a few,, i have few myself that could be open to debate,, ALAN RICKMAN, BRUCE WILLIS , VIN DISEL, JACK NICHOLSON, WESLEY SNIPES, TOM HARDY, BEN KINGSLEY, JAMES FRANCO, ANTHONY HOPKINS ,JAVIER BARDEM,RAY LIOTTA,TOMMY LEE JONES,

    • I can’t believe I am saying this but I like Bruce Willis. Brady’s too young and he had his shot. I like the dynamic of Kevin Costner being the good old boy from the 80′s and Willis being the bad ass. Plus Willis is bald, so do it. He needs to be involved in a super hero franchise and this is his shot.

    • Wesley Snipes couldn’t do it because he’s black (no I’m not being racist). Vin Diesel I couldn’t quite see either just because he looks more like a brawler, Lex isn’t a real threat with muscle he’s a threat with intelligence. And with saying that I can definitely see Anthony Hopkins doing it because he really nails the psychotic intellectual villain. I can also see Tommy Lee Jones as Lex since he also does well with being serious and angry. So in my opinion I’d say Anthony as my top pick and Tommy as second pick, but both would do well I think.

      • Not that I took your comment as racist, but I don’t think race would really matter that much in casting. Afterall, Perry White was portrayed in MOS by a black actor (Laurence Fishbourn) even though his character had always been white.

        Essentially though, I agree that Snipes would not be a good Lex. My reasoning for that though isn’t because he is black, but more for the reason that you stated for Diesel (who btw, is also part black)…Snipes is more of the brawler type as well (Blade movies, Demolition Man, Passenger 57). Although one of his more well-known roles was as a thuggish gangster who became rich & powerful in New Jack City. So, maybe Snipes if they wanted to do something a bit different, but I can’t really see it.

  6. I don’t know why Brianiac has been overlooked in the past in movies and TV, but enough of Lex Luthor – Bring on Brianiac. Not just Brainiac the alien but Brianiac the super computer (ala Borg) collector of world’s cities in tiny bottles (Kandor)a city on Krypton before the big bang. Then maybe they could introduce the “Superman emergency squad” anyone out there remember them?

  7. I say Brianiac, its a little far fetch but it can lead to a much more detailed introduction to Lex and his obsession with power, superman, world domination as well as the hatred of all space beings (including superman, which can also lead to a prequel to the third movie. Anyone who watch an episode with brainiac or read an arc or issue contains him knows that at time even superman have a hard time to deal with him, he might even need help ***hint*** Supergirl??? Cyborg??? or other possible characters that can be introduce into this up coming Justice League. And as the Man of Steel saves the day **with or without companion** somehow Lex Luthor came out on the shorter end of the stick, which can be the beginning of his hatred…etc

    ~food for thoughts, from a comic/anime/DC lover

  8. I would like to see them bring in Brainiac or Dark Side as an ultimate villian, even if (in the grand scheme) has to wait until the Justice League (providing they go the route of Marvel). He was one of the few villians that he can cut loose on. I wouldn’t mind seeing Mongul as a side villian once they start reaching out into space.

  9. Parasite. Have some of humanity afraid of Superman (possibly antagonized by Lex)… Afraid of what he could potentially do with his power. Parsite can take his powers away so he can truly understand what it’s like to be human and understand how humans feel to have a being with so much power doing what he thinks is right.

  10. omg snyder and nolan need to go away

    • really? NOLAN NEEDS TO GO AWAY? The only one that has actually made a critically and audience loved DC film.

      Goyer and Zack need to go away.

      • There are these things called the Donner films…maybe you’ve heard of them?

  11. Why does Superman always have to face a villain in order to make a film? How about several huge planet-killer sized chunks of Krypton on a collision course with earth? Superman would be powerless to stop them directly, wouldn’t he? Could make an exciting story. Or some other planetary disaster requiring a supersized response.

    • Heat vision from far away, tada movie over.

  12. I actually think that have more than enough for the sequel. Remember the phantom zone has been broken before. We might see Faora again, as well as Professor Hamilton (with a greater knowledge of Kryptonian science). They still have a sample of Superman’s blood taken when he was on Zod’s ship—does that become the failed experiment known as Doomsday or Bizarro? Braniac is definitely in the cards—the AI is already there with the whole Jor-El thing. Maybe brainiac is part computer and part organic with the DNA of the Krypton in Supe’s blood, or maybe Zod has encoded himself in the mainframe the same way Jor-el did and that is how Braniac is born. Lot’s of possibilities. Lex needs to be an emerging villain in the sequel. Full fledged in the third sequel as he develops a hatred for aliens and their destructive powers and the threat they are to his business empire and the human race. Make his fear and hatred legitimate. This would make him a more compelling character. Anyhow, looking forward to what they come up with.

  13. Yes, this movie was great and not to sound corny it’s just SUPER!!!!… but the one kink that bugs me is Lois shouts Clark in front of the Police that brought her to Kent’s farm and Supes was standing in front of the door, then even Supes telling Gen. Swan where he grew up whilst saying that the General won’t find where Supes hangs his cape?? He wouldn’t be a General if he can’t figure it out what with the first battle encounter being in Smallville, Kansas?? I really hope they’ll address this on the sequel

    And It would be totally interesting too seeing how CK could handle a double life just by putting on Glasses in this modern era with face recognition software available to law enforcement and government, an era where there are security video cameras at every turn and an era where there are cell phone cameras in everybody’s pocket

    Superman Returns addressed this but due to that CK version being a clumsy it never crossed people’s mind, I don’t think MoS would go the same route for CK though, maybe they can do the Spidey route (Sam Raimi’s version) where a number of times he was unmasked but people accepted and just stay quiet, or people would have suspicions but was the better for it

    Well those are some issues that I for one would be interested enough to go and watch the sequel just to find out

  14. I was hoping in this new version that the super man suit created a warped view of what Superman looked like to those that saw/see him in the suit vs outside of the suit in ‘people clothes’… not necessarily twister, but a slightly altered version of the MOS. that way you wouldn’t even need glasses necessarily or the kooky attitude as CK. I like that the world generated was his Kryptonite”. I presume Lex will get ahold of the tech and recreate it and we won’t really be seeing green rocks which is and was always silly.

  15. Get Ed Harris for Lex, need proof? Watch A History of Violence.

  16. Me am worst hero Superman ever hugged. c:

  17. What needs to happen for Man of Steel 2 to work toward a Justice League movie if there are not to be Origin Movies…
    Brief Introductions to: Lex Luthor, Bruce Wayne, Diana, Aquaman, Martian Manhunter, and Green Lantern (Jon Stewart)
    Villian: Brainiac
    As a primer, the “Arrow” TV series should provide a cross-over arc in Season 2 between Green Arrow and Green Lantern that provides the handoff from Ryan Reynolds reprising Hal Jordan to the new Green Lantern, Jon Stewart.
    Man of Steel 2 should center around the rebuilding of Metropolis after the devastation of Zod and the World Engine. Enter mogals Lex Luthor and even Buster Gold to assist with the cleanup and rebuilding with salvage rights on the tech. On the opposite side of the world, Diana and Aquaman surface to investigate the Indonesian devastation, leading them back to Metropolis along with Wayne and Jon Stewart to gauge this new hero on the block the public is calling Superman and an Alien Threat. This is more of a side story to bring these characters together to meet, and deem Superman as a Friend of Earth and not a threat. Somewhere in the salvage operation and reverse engineering, Brainiac is released and Lex discovers Kryptonite as Superman’s weakness. As the Brainiac AI Construct escapes and virally begins to take over, Superman is called upon to help understand and contain possibly with assistance of some LexCorp and Wayne Enterprise tech.

    I saw comments calling for Doomsday and I think he should be saved for the Justice League, Lex Luthor as the Villian should be reserved for Man of Steel 3, but he should be introduced and developed starting in the second movie. Whomever is taking over the Bruce Wayne/Batman role should also be introduced, and they should provide continuity from the Nolan trilogy with an Older Batman who has taken on more of the Detective and Financier Role of Justice League, and has built a library of information on all these heros and villians.

    • I guess since Reynolds is rumored to appear in Arrow and that’s another universe outside of the DC cinematic MOS universe that it would make sense to use John Stewart he’d also keep that race card so MM won’t need to be replaced by Cyborg and keeping the team Clark, Bruce, Diana, Barry, Arthur, John, and Jo’nn will keep me satisfied. The question is or mine is which flash will appear on Arrow.

  18. This movie was a spectacular flop both financially and critically, so I’ve been hearing the plans have changed quite dramatically. It doesn’t seem to have any more wind left.

    • Man of Steel is far from a flop. it made $589,530,420 so far, WB is projecting a major success at $650 with a $225mln budget. It’s a financial success.

      Name one article that claims MoS is a financial flop. Critics are seething because it’s such a financial success.

  19. I think a good way to bring in Lex would be to have Superman unintentionally or unknowingly in some way hinder Lexs’ plans for power ,maybe thwart some huge money making deal/scam he has, therefore he wants vengeance.

    Who could play Lex? I think it’s been said he would be a businessman , so it would need to reflect that, would he have to be bald? if so, he shouldn’t look ridiculous with a shaved head, he shouldn’t be too old either, with that thinking I’d rule out most of dvalleys list , however maybe Tom Hardy?

  20. *rolls eyes at the Barack Obama b.s. comment.*

  21. I think with Emil Hamilton in the phantom zone, it would be great to have Ruin come back mad against Superman. It would be a change and could very well lead to an introduction on Lex ass well. Moreover, Ruin could exploit that feeling Man Of Steel as risen on its ending about Superman k….

  22. What has to happen in the next Superman film (at least to get MY business)?

    A reboot.

    Just say “NO!” to the Man of Slaughter!

  23. I think that they need to add more substance to the basic story line. Lex Luthor is one of the largest pillars of the Superman bias. And for him to be included all of a sudden, hating all aliens and embarking on his kill Superman crusade, would disappoint audiences, being so critical in the modern movie industry. Snyder and Goyer pretty much made a hard job harder with this first Man Of Steel, as now they’re stuck with the idea of producing a sequel with toooooo many loose ends, especially in Lex Luthor. Theres also the fortress of solitude, and Kal-els remarkable intelligence and scientific skills depicted in both the comics and the animated series.
    As for dooms day, i think its to early to start thinking about Superman dying. That would be a great shame.
    I would love to see Christian Bale reprise his role as Batman with Superman and all the rest in an epic Justice League moive.

  24. To me, Luthor was always best as the hands-off master manipulator rather than as the more physical, combative villain. He should be included, but he should have another villain working for him to do the dirty work of trading blows with Superman.

    MOS 2 should expand on the Kryptonian cloning concept. Someone like Luthor who witnessed the power of Kryptonian technology come to Earth would immediately go to work trying to figure out how he could make it work for him. And given his resources, he would have the means to do so. He would from there find the technology they use to make the clones, and likely a piece of Kal’s DNA from when he was on Zodd’s ship. He tries to clone Superman, and Bizarro is created, becoming the main villain Superman fights.

    You could also leave an easter egg in MOS 2 alluding to a second clone being created, much like the empty pod on the ship in MOS alluding to the possibility of another Kryptonian on Earth (which will most likely turn out to be Supergirl). Then in MOS 3, the villain would be Doomsday. After Superman defeats him and dies from fatigue, it would be revealed that this second clone was Kon-El (Superboy), who dons the cape a la The Dark Knight Rises.

    There’s your trilogy. You’re welcome.

  25. Have the Origin of the Parasite involving the cosmic debris that mutates him. in the ending we could learn of Lex Luthor’s involvement and the space matter is from krypton.

  26. I like to see Supergirl starring in the MOS sequels. That will be awesome.

    • I agree. Supergirl would be an awesome addition. It would also show that there are aliens willing to help and fight for justice. It would be a good start.

  27. Superman is bent od GUIDING humanity. The next movie should deal with that. How “good” of an example he can be? How far will he let the rulers of the world go before he intervenes? What will the world will have to counter Superman? Will the “solution” to stop Superman consist of other D.C. Comics characters? This could be the invite for the Justice League that the fans desire. I’m with the Nolan and the dude who palyed Superman; Superman needs some time to grow or a good writer(s) that can jam pack all that together in a good bowl of cheerios! ;)

  28. Personally, I would avoid anything relating to kryptonite, thus avoiding Metallo, K-Man, Lex the main villain, or having Batman somehow able to stand up to Kal-El. You could still have Lex, but the main villain would be better off as someone like Parasite, Doomsday, or even Brainiac (although we’ve just had an alien invasion movie, so Brianiac might not be a great idea). I think Parasite would be a good choice for MoS2, and Doomsday saved for the MoS3 or JL2.

    Having a Doomsday movie could lead into a Justice League movie – obviously there are beings out there strong enough to take down Earth’s most powerful resident. So when Darkseid comes knocking, that’s when the heroes (most of which should already be introduced by this point), will come together to stop this new invasion.

    I personally think the Superman/Batman idea could ruin this franchise before it gets a chance to really take off – especially if it’s a Superman VERSUS Batman film. Also, the fact they are rushing the JL movie is really going to hurt it in terms of characters – they will have at least 4 characters to introduce / reboot (Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, Aquaman, and the villains – Darkseid and his minions).

    They need to have at least 1 more solo Man of Steel movie, and solo movies to introduce Wonder Woman, Flash, and Green Lantern (unless they continue with the current GL). Then a Justice League movie to introduce Aquaman and the new Batman. After that, Aquaman can get a solo movie and instead of a Batman solo movie (since he’s just had a trilogy) they could do the highly-sought-after Superman/Batman crossover. However, this should NOT be a versus movie – it should be a team-up (World’s Finest, Public Enemies, etc etc).

    Justice League sequels could introduce other characters such as Martian Manhunter and Cyborg, while Shazam would be better off with his own origin movie before joining the League.

    So my ideal movie order:
    - MoS
    - Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Lantern, (any order, doesn’t matter)
    - MoS2 (Parasite or Doomsday as main villain, Lex is also introduced)
    - Justice League (introduces Aquaman, Batman, Darkseid)
    - Superman/Batman team-up, Shazam, solo sequels to any other character
    - Justice League 2 (introduces Martian Manhunter and/or Cyborg)

  29. Love the first and can’t wait until July 2015, and to see how Affleck does. But for me, I don’t mind some of the “reall?” type things in the movie(s). I realize it’s more real and everything, but I’m fine with the glasses and some of the little things like that. I mean at the end of the day, it is just a movie.