Zack Snyder Calls Superman ‘Broken,’ Disses ‘Thor’

Published 4 years ago by , Updated August 15th, 2012 at 10:15 am,

superman by alex ross Zack Snyder Calls Superman Broken, Disses Thor

It seems Superman is a difficult character for creators to grasp, both in the world of comics and film. Hence the reason Bryan Singer made Superman Returns – it was so much easier to basically remake Richard Donner’s Superman (this time with Baby Superman!) than to branch out into uncharted cinematic territory.

Over the weekend, director Zack Snyder talked to our very own Roth Cornet about his approach to Superman: Man of Steel, a film he’s calling “the most realistic” he’s ever made – which isn’t saying much when you look at his filmography. Yesterday, Snyder talked to Hollywood Outbreak and referred to Superman as a broken concept, while managing to diss Marvel’s Thor in the process.

It should be noted that when Zack Snyder said, “Superman is broken and I think it needs to be fixed,” his wife and producing partner, Deborah Snyder, interjected with, “From a movie standpoint.” At which point Snyder repeated, “From a movie standpoint.” So Snyder isn’t calling the Superman of the comic books broken, even though many a comic book fan would have no problem saying just that.

Snyder continued to discuss Superman’s movie problem, going so far as to mock Thor by comparison:

“[Superman] is the freaking […] biggest superhero on the planet. He’s the father of every superhero. [Deborah and I] were just talking about this – I’m like, really? Thor? Thor has a movie? [Laughter.] Really? I mean, come on. And there’s no Superman movie? This is, like, the world’s out of balance. It’s like, we’ve lost our minds here, people, come on.”

Listen, there’s no doubt that, cinematically-speaking, Superman has a massive problem. The fact that there hasn’t been a truly successful Superman film since 1980 is both astounding and sad. That said, there’s no reason in the world to denigrate the Marvel version of Thor, who was created by Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, and perhaps the greatest comics creator of all time, Jack Kirby. Hell, at least Superman has had quality representation in film – twice over. The last time Thor was seen in a movie theater was The Adventures of Babysitting.

superman versus thor Zack Snyder Calls Superman Broken, Disses Thor

Zack Snyder also discussed the meeting he had with producers Christopher Nolan and Emma Thomas before he took the directing job:

“When [Christopher and Emma] asked Deborah and I out to lunch [to tell us] what they wanted to do with [Man of Steel] – I’ve got to say, [beforehand] I was like, ‘I don’t know if I can [do Superman]. [Afterward], I was like, ‘This is right.’ […] I didn’t need to hear that much before I went, ‘Okay, that’s right, that’s the right way to do it.’ […] I’m a fan of the character. I want him to be awesome.”

Check out the full audio recording at Hollywood Outbreak.

While I agree with Zack Snyder that every Superman film since 1980 has been insignificant or just plain bad, I’m not sure the way toward creating the best possible Superman film is realism. After all, the best iteration of Superman in the past twenty years was Grant Morrison’s All-Star Superman, which was all kinds of strange, ridiculous, and about as far away from realism as a story can get. In the end, realistic or not, Man of Steel’s quality will be determined not by its style, but by – well, everything else.

Superman: Man of Steel hits theaters December 2012.

Source: Hollywood Outbreak

Superman art by Alex Ross and George Perez

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  1. Amy Adams is the new Lois Lane.

  2. Zack Snyder should have said”“[Superman] is the freaking […] biggest superhero on the planet. He’s the father of every superhero. [Deborah and I] were just talking about this – I’m like, really? Sucker punch? I made a Sucker Punch movie? [Laughter that goes on for hours.] Really? I mean, come on. And now they let me oversee a Superman movie? This is, like, the world’s out of balance. It’s like, we’ve lost our minds here, people, come on.”

  3. Zack Snyder is coming off THREE failed films. Yet for some reason studios keep throwing money at him. Superman is a passe’ concept. As a character, he’s actually terrible. There’s was no way to defeat him. Trying to make him interesting by making him moody is what I call “Twilighting” the character. And let’s cut right to it, they ARE making this movie into another Twilight.

    • It’s fine if you don’t like Superman and don’t care for the film being made (or the director making it), but understand this: Many people DO find Superman to be an excellent character with a fantastic mythology, and quite a few of those fans ARE looking forward to this film and do NOT see any “Twilighting” being done.

      • Hip young parents, a “moody” hero played by a pretty boy Brit who’s trying to find his place among humans, a female lead who’s drawn to a being that she can never fully relate to. Sounds like Twilight to me. I don’t want to see a super hero brood for two hours. That’s why the first Hulk movie tanked. Ang Lee wanted to prove how deep the character of Bruce Banner was, when all the audience wanted to see was “HULK SMASH!!”. If we see 120 minutes of Clark Kent pouting saying “I’m so misunderstood”, then I really think we’re all going to be walking out of the theater ask ourselves “what went wrong?”.

        Stan Lee said that he always made the villain stronger than the hero. That way he presents a challenge, and the hero has to rise to the occasion. That’s precisely where Superman as a character has his biggest flaw. He’s too powerful. There’s very little to challenge him. So it looks like we’re going to get a character study about how Clark Kent doesn’t “fit in”. The reason why Thor worked is we saw a powerful character who suddenly has to cope without having his power. Spider-Man worked because he had to rise to the challenge to defeat the Green Goblin. You root for the hero. There’s no reason to root for Superman, he’s already got it in the bad.

        • I begin to see the problem…You are reading WAAAY too much into what little know of the film, so far. Yes, his parents will be younger; that doesn’t mean they’ll be hip, just younger than they’ve been portrayed before. Lois Lane finds Superman a fascinating person, as do most people, female AND male, in the world he inhabits (as would we, were he to appear in the real world). She gets to know him a bit better and falls in love…This sounds EXACTLY like EVERY other relationship between vastly different people (innocent and scarred, poor and rich, North and South, etc.) that various novels, shows, and films have portrayed countless times. No one has said (or, in the slightest, implied) that there will be heavy brooding in this film…just that Clark will be trying to figure himself out for part of it. During this time, there is no reason for him not help people with his powers, whether in the suit or not. In other words, there can (and considering Snyder’s resume’, probably WILL) be plenty of action.

          As for Superman being TOO powerful for anyone to take him on, that has been a criticism in the past (though not continuously or consistently). THAT is why, for the past ten years or so, the various writers of Superman have made sure to give him much more powerful and adept opponents, beings who not only equal Superman’s power, but who can also match (or outmatch) him in abilities, intellect, and experience. You are very out-of-date in your assumption of Superman as a character. Zod, in particular, and his cronies/associates can give Kal-El a run for his money.

  4. This is anew chapter for superman in anew world I have been working on the movie here in Vancouver, and can tell u its exciting and going to shock the regular superman movie fans….

  5. The fun thing about movies is that you never know what will happen Snyder has done films that have made a ton of money and have great action but none of them are that emotionally moving based on what I’ve heard because I haven’t seen any of them needless to say but who knows when the got the director of elf to make iron man everyone thought it would be a total failure and if that movie hadn’t been made a lot of other superhero that were on the B list wouldnt have gotten there own movie that includes the new DC universe movies that they’ll be making the wonder woman movie which hopefully will come soon and if course the other marvel stuff. Let’s give this guy a chance who knows we can’t see into the future maybe he can make this into something really special like inception or something he sounds excited as long as he has fun and works hard hell probably do a terrific job.

  6. Funny that he disses Thor, then goes on to basically copy it with Man of Steel.

  7. @Ben Moore
    Are you kidding? Thor is…….a joke when compared to Kal-El. Who even knows about Thor’s childhood or anything, he doesnt even do anything for the earth in the way Kal does, heck spiderman does a better job than thor, even though spideys significantly less powerful