We assumed all this time that Christopher Nolan was dragging his heels on a third Batman film because he wanted to put all his focus on Inception before moving on to the next thing. Nope! As it turns out, Warner Bros. was forcing Nolan to take on another iconic American superhero, and presumably Nolan was trying to duck the responsibility before just giving in. Deadline Hollywood is reporting that Nolan will be mentoring yet another reboot of the Superman franchise, even as work finally begins on the third Batman film.

Superman 3.0, as Deadline is calling, is in such infancy that even the studio insiders admit, "Warner Bros doesn't have a handle yet on it." All they really know is they're pretending Superman Returns doesn't exist, though apparently it's vaguely possible that Bryan Singer and Brandon Routh would be involved (though if you were Bryan Singer, would you go near this?) In the words of another source, "We know what we don't want to do. But we don't know what we want to do. We learned a lot from the last movie, and we want to get it right this time." Nolan would almost definitely not be directing or writing the film, but helping shepherd the project as the golden child of superhero movies, and maybe even picking a writer and director.

I know what you're already thinking-- a dark and gritty Superman! But while I know absolutely nothing about what's in store, I'd say not so fast. The reason Nolan hit it out the park with Batman is because he stayed true to the character, a guy who was dark and brooding by nature. Superman, on the other hand, has never really been that way-- sure he's got plenty of emotions to grapple with and has the whole alien backstory, but he's the bright and shining American hero to Batman's gloomy antihero.

Plus, Bryan Singer already went the brooding Superman route, and that's what WB is actively trying to get away from. More than Nolan being the guy who made the most successful superhero movie of all time, I imagine Warner Bros. is trusting him because he's smart, period. No idea how they talked him into being in charge of two of the most beloved characters of all time, but if anyone can handle it, it's Nolan and his braintrust.

What's really remarkable is how WB has allowed Nolan to hold all the chips. Now, without him, there's not only no Batman, but no Superman either. God help us all if Nolan gets hit by a bus, or even takes a Dave Chapelle-style leave of absence. It's not just a nation of fans now relying on Nolan to lead us, but an entire multi-billion dollar studio. Let's hope the guy we've always regarded as a genius can keep it up.

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