Antje Traue's Faora proved to be a formidable villain in Man Of Steel but did she survive the movie, and could she return? Following the box-office failure of 1987's Superman IV: The Quest For Peace, which marked Christopher Reeve's last time playing the title role, Superman was absent from the big screen for almost 20 years. A number of projects were developed during that period, from a potential Superman V to Tim Burton's infamous Superman Lives. Nicolas Cage was cast in the latter project and he would have fought supervillain Brainiac, but Warner Bros pulled the plug over budget concerns.
The character eventually returned with the aptly titled Superman Returns in 2006, though the movie proved disappointing after the long wait and failed to launch a new series. The character was rebooted once again with Zack Snyder's Man Of Steel, which took inspiration from the grounded approach to comic book movies seen in Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy; Nolan also served as producer. Man Of Steel ultimately received mixed reviews, with the destruction heavy climax being criticized. The movie was a hit, however, and served as the launching pad for the DCEU with the next entry being Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice.
The DCEU has been something of a mixed bag for fans so far, with Wonder Woman considered the highlight while Justice League was a critical and commercial disappointment. Arguably the best villain to grace the series is Michael Shannon's General Zod from Man Of Steel, who tests the strength and morality of Superman in more ways than one. Maybe the most underrated part of the movie is Antje Traue's Faora. She was Zod's sub-commander on Krypton and helped him during his failed coup, and later came to Earth with her General to help him establish a new Krypton.
Prior to Antje Traue being cast as Faora, the role was offered to Wonder Woman star Gal Gadot, who had to turn it down due to pregnancy. Traue was previously seen in the space horror film Pandorum alongside Dennis Quaid, and she brings a genuine menace to Faora. She's just as single-minded and ruthless in her quest, having been genetically engineered to serve Krypton. She's super fast and virtually indestructible, being able to shrug off heavy gunfire and multiple explosions. She's also the first superpowered villain Henry Cavill's Superman battles and proves to be a serious challenge.
Faora seems to perish in Man Of Steel's finale when she attempts to destroy a military plane that's trying to take down Zod's Black Zero ship. The plane is also carrying Superman's ship, which creates a phantom drive, so when the military plane collides with Black Zero it creates a Phantom Zone portal that sucks in Faora and others loyal to Zod. That's the last that's seen of Faora in the movie - and the DCEU - to date. That could change, however, since Zack Snyder later confirmed Faora survived and is currently imprisoned in the Phantom Zone.
With the DCEU currently undergoing a retooling with Matt Reeves' The Batman and James Gunn's The Suicide Squad, it's unknown if Henry Cavill's Superman will return. Even if he doesn't reprise the role, it would be great to see Antje Traue's return in some form, since she's still one of the most formidable villains found in the DCEU. Since the universe seems to be moving away from the initial version set out for the franchise with Man Of Steel, that could mean she might be a permanent resident in the Phantom Zone.
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