When fans filed in for Man Of Steel last summer, few guessed that the universe being established by director Zack Snyder would lead directly to a Batman/Superman teamup. The violent, effects-filled world of super-powerful Kryptonians didn't seem to leave room for the Dark Knight Detective, so when Snyder and company announced the team-up film, most fans were more than a little confused. Was that the plan all along?
Snyder sat down with Forbes to discuss how the Caped Crusader became such a huge part of the Man Of Steel sequel, suggesting that while Batman was on the table, no one involved were directly planning on going to Gotham. Snyder says that Batman's name was casually floated -- "Maybe at the end of the second movie, some Kryptonite gets delivered to Bruce Wayne’s house or something." -- but the wheels quickly turned. He spoke about questioning who Superman should fight next, and how to follow Zod...
The problem is, once you say it out loud, then it’s kind of hard to go back, right? Once you say, "What about Batman?" then you realize, "Okay, that’s a cool idea. What else?" I mean, what do you say after that? …But I’m not gonna say at all that when I took the job to do Man of Steel that I did it in a subversive way to get to Batman. I really believe that only after contemplating who could face [Superman] did Batman come into the picture.
Snyder doesn't talk about the politics or finessing that arguably went into Batman's return trip to the screen. Not to diminish Snyder's contributions to the idea (mailing kryptonite is an AMAZING/TERRIBLE idea). But Batman had just finished a self-contained trilogy, each film being a monster hit for Warner Bros. Bringing him back within only a couple of years was a decision made with several factors in mind. Potentially a dangerous one, considering the character's level of exposure, and the possibility it might overshadow Superman.
Snyder seems confident in his portrayal of the Last Son Of Krypton, however. Comparing it to Watchmen (while squashing that silly Gilliam beef), Snyder says he's brought the character into the real world. And yes, that involves the occasional murder of a super-powered being... which happened in the comics, but wasn't part of the Christopher Reeves versions of the films.
I guess the rules that people associate with Superman in the movie world are not the rules that really apply to him in the comic book world, because those rules are different. He’s done all the things and more that we’ve shown him doing, right? It’s just funny to see people really taking it personally… because I made him real, you know, I made him feel, or made consequences [in] the world.
The interview is intriguing, because it ultimately says very little about the plot of the film, mostly because it's still percolating in pre-production, and probably because there's a gag order on Snyder. Though he does tiptoe around it by discussing the eventual release of the costumes. The Batman/Superman film comes out May 6th, 2016. Make your choice, superhero fans.