Young Clark Kent Says ‘Man of Steel’ is ‘Dark Knight’ Edgy

Published 3 years ago by , Updated July 24th, 2013 at 9:46 am,

In between anticipation for 2012 superhero films like The Avengers and The Dark Knight Rises, there’s been question about the next big comic book blockbuster on the way, which is Zack Snyder’s (Watchmen) reboot of the Superman movie franchise, Man of Steel.

Set photos and official images aside, what we’ve learned about Man of Steel so far has come primarily from the words and opinions of the cast and crew – and today continues this trend. Check out what Dylan Sprayberry – the actor who plays of the younger version of Clark Kent – had to say about the Superman reboot’s tone, and how it compares to DC/Warner Bros. other big superhero property, namely Chris Nolan’s Batman trilogy.

According to Sprayberry:

When Zack [Snyder] and I were talking about it the first time, he was saying how Superman, they want to give it a more edgy feel like The Dark Knight but also make it more realistic and emotional so it’s not just the all-American superhero that saves everyone. He has dilemmas and love and struggles throughout the whole movie, especially when he’s a kid.

Regarding the scope of the film:

I didn’t even really notice how big it was until I finished shooting. It was so overwhelming that it was crazy, I was like “I can’t believe I just did all that.” In the moment, I was really focused on the work and the acting.

This isn’t the first time we’ve heard Man of Steel being compared to the dark and edgier tones of the Nolan Batman films – star Michael Shannon (General Zod) said the same thing a few months back. The “danger” of making such comparisons is that they tend to rile up those fans who either A) don’t think the Nolan Bat-films are as great as millions (upon millions) of people think they are, or B) don’t think that a bright and shining hero like Superman should be in any way similar to a dark and brooding guy like Batman.

superman batman movie Young Clark Kent Says Man of Steel is Dark Knight Edgy

In the latter case, some fans would likely say that it’s Hollywood and the ‘people making the film who know nothing about Superman’ who are trying to blindly emulate the success of the Batman movies at high cost to the identity and legacy of Superman – but that’s not quite the case. Superman, the character, was just re-invented by DC Comics’ “New 52″ reboot, in which the iconic hero is presented as being, well, edgier than before –  complete with scaled-down powers that also make him more vulnerable.

The idea behind these changes is to create a Superman more fitting for our current times – less idealistic and invincible, more complex and vulnerable – and while the rebooted comic books have been doing fine in terms of reception and sales, whether or not the wider moviegoing public is going to embrace this new rendering of a classic icon remains to be seen…

Man of Steel flies into theaters on June 14, 2013.

Source: Clever TV (via Coming Soon)

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  1. I believe Superman needs an upgrade i want to see superman busted up and fighting for his life like in the death of Superman can you imagine the effects of Superman and Doomsday putting each other through buildings etc and then at the end of the 1st film the flag with supermans cape is left blowing in the wind. Obviously this isnt going to be Synders story as he has Zod in it but even Zod and Superman going at it. Thats why Superman 2 is most peoples favourite because Superman fights villans with his powers. The original Donner version of Superman 2 where Brando gives Superman his powers back using his last bit of magic is awesome and should of been in the movie had the company making the movie not replaced him.
    At the end of Man of Steel id like to see Doomsday appear and then the wait would be on for the sequel. Superman returns was a nice nostalgic look at Donners Superman but i hated the Superman love kid story it was rubbish the plane scene and the part where he saves Lois and her family on the boat were close to getting the spine tingling but i just think Superman needs to have a good tear up with Zod in the city centre like in Superman 2. A darker more sneaky Superman to defeat Zod would be a welcome change for me.

  2. I agree with toning down supermans invincibility just a bit and focusing a little more on complexes and emotions. That’s what people want these days, the billions of dollars the dark knight trilogy has made is proof of that. That’s what I want. It will certainly make him the appealing character superman once was, so I think it’s a genius move. But hey, everyone has different tastes. So how about this…we just go see the g****** movie!!! And THEN judge. 😉

    • @ Justin

      Then again i think imo that was part of the problem with Superman Returns in the first place. That film had that stuff, just little too much & what others thought shouldn’t been in the film at all. One thing WB/DC realized the film lacked as fans did was the action & physcial threat for Superman to face. Nolan’s Batman trilogy hasn’t proven anything as Batman is the flipside of Superman.

      I remain skeptical of the reboot simply because it all seems like a rehash of the first two Superman films aswell as a touch of Smallville in there done in the same way Nolan began his Batman trilogy. Not to mention how Superman Returns felt like a remake to Donnor’s first Superman film. As you said everyone has differant tastes & opinions.

      • no offense but how can you say it seems like a rehash? literally like zero information has been given out about this movie. i agree that what you said was what was wrong with sp returns there was zero action Lex luthor is great in tv but once he hits the screen its crap. Because superman was the first hero his creators gave him everything, i mean seriously he almost has too much power theres like nothing he cant do plus hes good looking and and like the nicest person in the universe. Hes too perfect. thats why i think making it dark knightesh is a great idea i love superman he is my favorite hero but damn it give the man a flaw! give him emotion! in the films he lost his home and father yet he could still talk to him pretty much whenever. I want him to get his ass beat cry and bleed. THEN get back up. THATS superman rising up no matter what happens i CANNOT wait for this movie. TDKR and Amzing spiderman have nothing on my excitement for Man of Steel

        • @ joeybatman

          From what i read it seems like a rehash. Some of the facts for thy i say that is for one, they’re goin over Superman’s origins again, why is he’s on earth in more detial much like Smallville has done but in shorter time frame of-course. They’re goin with General Zod as the main villain again only as we know yet Fiona is by his side but there could be more. It’s like the first two Superman films almost. I wouldn’t be surprised because this sort plot happed on lois & Clark: New Adventures of Superman only of-course they didn’t go over the whole Origin-telling & didn’t use General Zod & his minions as they wanted to stay away from the films in that season 4 two-parter when kryptonians invaded Earth. Even the military got involved between Superman & Lord Nor as they called him. Again in Superman:TAS samething, different scenio and villain names but instead goin with General Zod & Fiona, they went with Jax-Ur & Mala.

          Actually, Superman’s creators didn’t make him so strong right away when he first appeared in comics. He didn’t even fly yet. You could tell Reeve’s Superman struggled. If his Superman was so strong as people claim, his fights would be over within 5 or 10 mins tops. I mean he was slowly moving the moon in Superman 4 & top of a mountain to stop a volcano from leaking, Slowly flying a mass of frozen ice to a big fire in Superman 3,direct a nuke into space in the first film, among other things. Imo, he was always powered down on screen. Whether it was live-action or animation of the character. Most heroes are good looking, both male & female. As for him being one of the nicest people, well thats how he was first created & was brought up in the comics by his adoptive parents. Of-course like any comic characters number of things change over the years for interesting stories & to make that character more interesting. I don’t like the idea of them makin him Dark Knightish. But… i do like Superman have his moments or days. Some who pushes his him too far,someone like Darkseid. I liked how they handle that in Superman:TAS. Superman is the first hero ive seen in my life so i care alot about how he’s handle regarding everything about him & the mythos. Some things i can accept but some i cannot.

          I agree that they need a really good film for Superman. Im just skeptical about not getting it from Zack Snyder even if Nolan had a hand in it.

  3. No way!!! The name is Superman! He has to be invincible. This better not be a weak movie. So much hope for it.

    • I grew up watching george reeves as superman and reading his comic books and taking some of his powers away would destroy the man of steel I grew up with. Ive seen several films where it was’nt no good, stay true to who and what he is, when you take some of his powers away you make him a super hero but not superman.

  4. If they’re gonna tone & depower the fav character to a sissy character, then I’m not seeing the g*dd#@mn movie. Only individuals with lack of creativity & imagination would consider toning down the beloved character. No way, it is not acceptable, this Nolan Superman is definitely NOT the Superman character I have read in comics that I grew up with. It’s no wonder they changed the costume, because it is not the Superman character we have read and known.

  5. In actuality the New 52 Superman is not just a reboot to an edgier, more vulnerable Superman, but an injection of the original creators’ vision for Superman re-imagined for our times. The original Superman was not all mighty and invincible, in fact he didn’t even fly right away. Leaping tall buildings in a single bound eventually evolved into flight. I think this is a much needed perspective on the Man of Steel. Something that will fit within our times during our ‘recession’ as Superman originally fit within the times of the Depression.

    • Ed…

      Very well said.

  6. A quote from the largest opening of ALL-TIME and a movie superior to Dark Knight seems fitting here for SUPERMAN which should never be “edgier”. Its of course Superman who stand for truth, justice…

    “Everything that’s happening, the things that are about to come to light, people might just need a little old fashioned.”

    We need an Old Fashioned Superman not another poor attempt at making something edgier cuz its perceived as the way to go.

    • Heh…”The Avengers” is definitely not even close to superior to TDK…certainly not even as good. That was cute though.

      • @ Archaeon

        Everyone has their opinion but The Avenger’s topped TDK’s opening weekend gross & is highly praised critically by critics & fans alike still. If it out grosses TDK after it’s theatrical run, so be it. If not The Avengers, some other film is bound to one day.

        • Wally…

          I have no problem with “The Avengers” or some other film beating TDK’s take or total…as you say, it was bound to happen. I very much enjoyed TA (even gave it 4/5 here on ScreenRant), but whereas I left TDK thinking about ideas expressed and implied, themes, gadgetry, and character arcs shown and potential, I left TA thinking, “Wow, that was cool…now, what do I want for lunch?” That, to me, says one film was better than the other…yes, in my opinion AND quite a few others.

          Does any of that mean I won’t get TA on blu-ray when it’s released? Nope…I will–gladly. However, when I left the theater after TA (and after deciding where to eat lunch), I thought about how excited I was ( and still am) to see the upcoming TDKR AND “The Amazing Spider-Man”…so soon after seeing TA and with more anticipation, STILL.

          All of these people saying that those praising TDK at this point (especially if they also do not think TA was the gift from the gods many others believe) MUST be jealous are forgetting the simple possibility (IMO, truth) that they might just think TDK was a better film than TA. A lot of “Avengerites” are being just as obnoxious and moronic as the “Nolanites” they constantly decry.

          Hence, my response to the above post.

          BTW, everything I have seen, read, and heard leads me to believe that “Man of Steel” might very well be an excellent film.

          • Makes sense

    • Brian, thank you.

    • @ Brian

      Agreed. I agree with the last two sentances heartly, especially Truth & Justice part which should be reminded on film more than ever in a Superman film.

      I even mentioned that quote on another Superman thread myself,lol.

    • What we need is for Superman to be a Good Film. Edgy is often a word thrown around by marketing people who have no idea what they’re talking about but nonetheless for some reason think it’s okay to impose their vision on films when they should be letting the film makers do their job. Marvel had a stroke of genius and made a ton of money by choosing a great writer/director for Avengers, but also it had the greatest marketing buildup of all time by having five movie prequels. What I’m morbidly curious about is how much they’ll attribute the success of Avengers to its being released in 3D, and whether that will make a big difference in the amount of money Dark Knight Rises makes since it’s not in 3D, and whether the studios will ironically start putting pressure on guys like Christopher Nolan to film in 3D when they already have a vision and are fundamentally opposed to gimmickry.

      In other words, will they give smart film makers like Christopher Nolan or Joss Whedon more freedom or less freedom after this summer? Or will they overlook the creative people they’ve been lucky enough to have hired and instead see superheroes/imax/3D as an short cut to instant success instead of giving the creative people the credit they deserve?

      In my opinion, Richard Donner, Sam Raimi, and Jon Favreau all to one degree or another eventually got stabbed
      in the back by the very studios they made successful films with unique visions for. I hope the success of the Avengers is a good thing that leads to more trust in the people who are making these films great.

  7. Superman is Superman, plain and simple. You don’t tone down his powers. EVER. You either give him an enemy that pushes him to use every ounce of will, intelligence and strength that he has, or don’t bother. Superman is that one icon that shouldn’t be messed around with. Remember that animated episode where he FINALLY gets to cut loose on Darkseid. He knows no one will get hurt. No collateral. And so he finally tears Darkseid a new one. THAT’s the kind of thing that has been missing on the big screen. Superman already HAS weaknesses. It’s kryptonite, but more importantly his own emotions, convictions and righteousness that can be used against him very easily, especially by a villain such as Zod. IMHO, that’s plenty. You don’t go ‘rebooting’ such an icon with a lame ‘new generation edgy bla blah’ excuse.

  8. Look, the grim ‘n gritty version of Nolan was a fine vision for Batman. That’s why it was successful. It works for the world that Batman lives in.

    But even with the reboot, the Superman world is not the same as Gotham.

    This is going to bomb and it’s going to bomb hard. They already tried the dark/depressing Superman angle with Superman Returns, and for some ridiculous reason, they’ve decided to continue in that vision, even though they decided that SR was a bomb.

    How hard is it to make an appropriate film for the appropriate hero, DC?

    For goodness’ sake. LOOK at your competition, DC. Iron Man, Thor, Avengers: All of these are not depressing, grim ‘n gritty “realistic” depictions of anything. The superheroes show up, smash and save the day. Are they smart and funny? Yes. But they are as far and away from Nolan’s Batman as Superman *should* be.

    tl;dr: When you think of Superman, you should think of The Avengers, not The Dark Knight.

    I can’t wait for this terrible film to bomb so I can say I Told You So.

    • Wow. Way to support the making of a film about a beloved character. I’m not saying you have to think this film will succeed…you certainly don’t have to see it.

      The problem (and the very sad one, at that) is that you ACTIVELY hope it will fail. You WANT it to bomb. Pathetic.

  9. One of my co-workers told me something un-interesting DC Comics is planning to do. Next month one of DC’s longest traditional heroe’s secret is gonna come outta the closet to keep up with the times, in their words. Anyone else heard about this aswell? I know if this true im gonna be more ticked off at DC than ever if it’s Superman or Batman,etc.

  10. All i want in the movie is that superman shud fly, he shud beat the crap out of zod, he shud be able to lift a mountain,he shud be able to breathe in space! That’s all i want! And
    he shud wear an underwear

  11. I think the movie is gonna hit big…with russel crowe in the cast..