Make no mistake, movie fans: Man of Steel is upon us. Warner Bros. is kicking marketing into full gear, and as excitement builds, so too do the chances of a rebooted Superman opening all kinds of doors for all involved. The question on everyone’s mind: will this be the movie that removes all question marks from director Zack Snyder’s future?
In case there are still some claiming that executive producer Chistopher Nolan – the man responsible for the reemergence of The Dark Knight – is the one ensuring that Man of Steel is just as successful, star Henry Cavill has once again explained that it was he and Snyder who created this new hero, for better or worse.
In a recent interview with F*** Magazine (via CBM), Henry Cavill was asked about the talent assembled behind the cameras for what is quickly shaping up to be the biggest movie of the summer – the implication being that Christopher Nolan’s presence is hard to ignore. The studio might encourage that, but where Nolan’s vision ends and Snyder’s begins has proven a hot topic.
Although many still see Nolan as the brains and guiding hand behind Superman’s reboot – despite Nolan himself denying that’s the case – Cavill insists it’s Snyder’s vision for Superman that fans will see this summer, and no one else’s:
“Chris Nolan wasn’t there during the production itself, although I’m not sure how much work was done behind the scenes. I’m sure Zack had a phone call or two with him, but this is definitely Zack’s baby. He was the man in charge, and we created the character together, as opposed to having too many outside influences.”
“It’s a collaborative process and Zack wants us to talk to him about stuff and work with him on his ideas. If you say, ‘how about I do this,’ he’ll say ‘I don’t know if I like it yet, but give it a shot.'”
Knowing just how strongly Snyder feels about the ‘purity’ of DC’s heroes, it’s nice to hear that he’s still open to some insights from his actors. Then again, given the actors and actresses that compose his cast – Russell Crowe, Amy Adams, Laurence Fishburne, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane – one might say that Snyder and Cavill are the only two with something to prove.
We occasionally have to pinch ourselves, and remember that the same genre that once risked ruining actors’ careers is now the ‘promised land’ of blockbusters; even before Man of Steel has been released, talk of sequels is already circulating, and Zack Snyder has become the frontrunner for directing Justice League. And that’s all before the public has gotten a chance to react to the changes being made by Snyder and co.
Fans are still divided on whether or not it’s a wise choice or sacrilege to keep Kryptonite out of Man of Steel, since many claim it’s one of the only things that can truly render Superman vulnerable. Cavill explains that Snyder and Goyer didn’t keep Kryptonite out of the story to make Superman invincible, but to show yet another way for audiences to relate to the most iconic hero in the world.
In this case, Superman’s greatest weakness is himself (and no, we’re not referring to the newer, more “violent” flight):
“Again, it comes back to the human element; because he’s alone and there’s no one like him. That must be incredibly scary and lonely, not to know who you are or what you are, and trying to find out what makes sense. Where’s your baseline? What do you draw from? Where do you draw a limit with the power you have? In itself, that’s an incredible weakness.”
Some might scoff at such an emotionally charged and angst-ridden description of Superman’s ‘true’ weakness, but the sentiment is encouraging for those hoping to see a new take on the character – and is perfectly in line with Goyer’s description of Man of Steel as essentially “a story of a man with two fathers.”
Any comic book fan will tell you that for all his strength, Superman remains an orphan, the last of his people, living among a world that is not his own. With that in mind, depicting a character that isn’t the embodiment of loneliness is ignoring the obvious, and the theme that Nolan and Goyer fought for from the very beginning. Goyer recently explained that the reason for naming the movie ‘Man of Steel’ was to draw attention to the inhumanity of the character, so his weakness coming from inside makes perfect sense; this guy is not at peace.
Whether that theme will be one that mass audiences respond to remains to be seen. At least now we know who to credit should everything go according to plan. Or conversely, who’s to blame.
What do you think of Cavill’s take on Superman’s real weaknesses? Is that something you’ve been longing to see explored, or too melodramatic for your tastes? Leave your thoughts in the comments.
Man of Steel will be in theaters on June 14th, 2013.
Follow Andrew on Twitter @andrew_dyce.
Source: F*** Magazine (via CBM)