Well, no one can say that Man of Steel isn’t gaining momentum. Just days after the marketing kicked into high gear with the final action-packed trailer, the Superman reboot is quickly claiming the title of most anticipated summer movie to many comic book fans and casual moviegoers alike. But the enthusiasm for director Zack Snyder’s work is extending far beyond the big blue Boy Scout.

Rumors of Justice League abound wherever Superman goes – will Zack Snyder direct it? Will David S. Goyer write it? – but the latest reports aren’t claiming to be just gossip, but a full-blown confirmation. But for our part, we’d recommend everyone put their streamers and party hats away for now.

The rumors of a confirmation all stem from a recent interview Snyder took part in with Empire, the same coverage that has produced new images of both Superman and Zod (Michael Shannon), as well as hinting that Man of Steel may be built as open-ended as possible – with past comments hinting that the movie will launch a shared universe for DC Comics.

Superman and Zod covers for Empire Rumor Patrol: Will Zack Snyder Direct Justice League?

Naturally, how the Man of Steel and any potential sequels (already being developed, if you believe the rumors) will impact Warner Bros.’ plans hinges largely on the film’s success; if it’s a modest hit, it’s a step in the right direction. If it’s a billion-dollar blockbuster, then Nolan, Snyder, and Goyer will all have massive contracts in the future.

That fact isn’t lost on those conducting the interview, leading to an estimation of how Snyder could (or could not) be called on to helm a Justice League film. The word ‘confirm’ carries plenty of weight these days (or none at all, depending on who you ask), so let’s take a look at the magazine’s quote in question (via HenryCavill.org), in its entirety:

Both filmmakers [Zack and Deborah Snyder] know the proof will finally be in the watching, but there are rumblings about the breakfast counters of rival studios that Man of Steel is turning out very well indeed. Plans are being hatched, they say. Warner Bros.’ long-term view has been revised to embrace this new vision, just as the Dark Knight films resisted the commodification of Marvel. Whether we get a Justice League, they say, depends on Man of Steel. If we do, they say, Zack Snyder will be asked to direct.

Superman Man of Steel Zack Snyder Rumor Patrol: Will Zack Snyder Direct Justice League?

Now, if we were hoping to hear confirmation of a Justice League film and throw accuracy to the wind, we might read that passage as evidence of insider knowledge that if Man Of Steel is a hit, “they” – Warner Bros. – will offer Snyder the job. We’ve already explained why that move wouldn’t surprise anyone with knowledge of Warner Bros.’ track record, but if we’re focused solely on facts, it seems far more likely that the “they” in the above passage refers to “rival studios” – the same ones rumbling about Superman’s reboot.

The fact that this ‘scoop’ hasn’t been reported or even pulled from the interview as relevant by Empire lends credence to our reading, proving that awkward pronoun use can still send the internet into a maelstrom. So while we cross our fingers that a Justice League movie may become a reality at some point, expect a confirmation of that scale to be made with some fanfare, not buried in a lengthy conversation.

For what it’s worth, Superman fans are able to look forward to Snyder’s select cut of Man of Steel right out of the gate, as opposed to the multiple cuts and director’s prints of Watchmen. Artistic freedom and the studio’s biggest property seem like an unlikely match, but so far, Snyder knows just how lucky he’s been:

“I have a hard time having perspective…But I have to say that it is everything that I could have hoped for. Touch wood that I am not insane, but it feels really good…The movie is the director’s cut.”

Man of Steel Suit Rumor Patrol: Will Zack Snyder Direct Justice League?

Of course, Snyder is never one to back away from competition. So even if this summer looks promising for both Marvel and DC fans, the director is aiming at doing more than just offering a fun experience; he’s aiming at making the genre more meaningful for every costumed crime-fighter:

“In the end, Superman is Superman!…When you talk about superhero action movies, there is Batman of course, and I think that Chris (Nolan) laid a lot of important groundwork. And there are the Marvel movies… I don’t mean it as an insult, Iron Man and Hulk are strong superheroes, but we’ve never had a superhero movie where everyone can go, ‘Yeah, I understand the why of the whole thing.’ Superman is a character who deciphers the why of superheroes.

“What is the mythology of superheroes?…The answer is Superman. And that is awesome.”

Fans of Hulk and Iron Man may take issue with Snyder’s comments, but there’s no denying the fact that he’s passionate about the superhero tradition; and whether you’re on Marvel or DC’s side, or happy in the middle, those are the kind of filmmakers we love to see bringing comic books to life.

What do you make of the rumor? Are you taking our advice of awaiting the (seemingly inevitable) announcement of Snyder’s future with DC films, or getting on board early?

Man of Steel will be in theaters on June 14th, 2013.

Follow Andrew on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

Source: Empire (via HenryCavill.org)

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