‘Man of Steel’ trailers: Superman lonely at land, sea and air

July 24, 2012 | 6:30 p.m.

If the pair of teaser-trailers for Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel” are any indication, Henry Cavill’s Superman will have a lonely wanderer component to his hero’s journey and an outsider angst that cuts against the classic “big, blue Boy Scout” version of the hero.

The “Man of Steel” screenplay is written by David S. Goyer (who also shares a story credit with Christopher Nolan), who has shown a serious understanding of dark hues with the just-completed Gotham City trilogy. While the Batman films explored urban corruption in a bleak and shadowy city of millions, the opening “Man of Steel” trailers present a rural landscape (and the footage screened at Comic-Con highlights small-town suspicion of Clark Kent).

The Comic-Con footage hinted at Kent’s struggle to find his place in a world that seems unwilling to accept him, and the outsider issues don’t end when he puts on a cape. At one point in the preview clip, Superman is shown in handcuffs, surrounded by military.

The teaser trailers used much of the same footage, showing the hero-to-be hitchhiking on a snowy mountain road, petting an adorable dog in a fishing town and working aboard a boat à la “Deadliest Catch.” Both end with Superman taking flight, tearing through clouds and breaking the sound barrier.  Snyder has a deeply grounded reality throughout the footage. There’s none of the hyper-stylized approach from “300” or “Sucker Punch”; this is far closer to the beginning of Snyder’s “Dawn of the Dead.”

The two trailers are visually identical, but each has different voice-over narration. The first trailer features the voice of Kevin Costner, who plays Jonathan Kent, Clark’s adopted father on Earth.

“You’re not just anyone,” he says. “One day, you’re going to have to make a choice; you have to decide what kind of man you wanna grow up to be. Whoever that man is, good character or bad, he’s going to change the world.”

In the second teaser, Russell Crowe, who plays Clark’s biological father Jor-El, provides the voice-over.

“You will give the people an ideal to strive towards,” he says. “They will race behind you. They will stumble. They will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders.”

“Man of Steel,” slated for a June 14, 2013, release, also stars Amy Adams as Lois Lane, Laurence Fishburne as Perry White and Michael Shannon as General Zod.

— Noelene Clark


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35 Responses to ‘Man of Steel’ trailers: Superman lonely at land, sea and air

  1. aron says:

    Although Snyder running the show worries me, this teaser shows some great cinematography. If the entire film can be this artfully done then I think it will be a treat.

  2. Cason says:

    One word. NO!

  3. Chris says:

    The trailers are surprisingly evocative and impressionistic, particularly with the Lord of the Rings music and the poignant narration. Surprising because it doesn't look like a comic book Superman movie until the end, and because Zack Snyder's other stuff is hyperstylized, video-gamelike and dumbed down for 14 year old boys. Remember that the director doesn't do trailers — and in fact the trailer for the last Bryan Singer Superman film was better than the dull-as-dirt movie — so I'm not sure what to make of this. Still, as much as I like the existential tone of the trailer, Clark Kent belongs in a newsrom somewhere along his journey! .

  4. Eneria says:


  5. Tom F. says:

    This looks amazing! I trust in Snyder, especially after seeing "Watchmen," arguably the best written and best directed superhero movie ever.

    "The big blue boyscout" motif is not constant, as seen in "Red Son," in which constants of Superman are displayed, such as his compassion, but the corniness of him being a boyscout is omitted. Henry Cavill actually mentioned "Red Son" as being critical in his research for "Man of Steel."

    Superman is not "dark," but he is and should be portrayed as lonely during his upcoming as a superhero. He's not from Earth, and this reflects how Superman creators Siegel and Shuster felt, being the sons of Jewish immigrants. They set out to make Superman an ideal for what they wanted in themselves, a great American hero.

    • Avi says:

      I'm skeptical about your analysis of the writers feelings. I'm Jewish, and I don't think that Jews feel at all alienated in America.

  6. Rob says:

    This does look amazing. You know there is no need for another trailer to be released, this does enough to capture the essence of the Man of Steel. This is going to be an epic movie. I trust Snyder and the Nolan team.

    Look what they did with Batman creating three awesome movies, I think these guys surely capture what DC comic book characters are about. Each character has a journey in their life. Batman/Bruce wayne struggle with his parents death which lead him to become Batman. Superman/Clark Kent struggled how to fit into society to later become the Man of Steel.

  7. A Fan says:

    This is a true teaser! But, I understand, and felt, what it was trying to evoke. Even more so (perhaps) by using Howard Shore’s beautiful composition. If done right, given the many source materials available which offer depth to this Icon, this may the epic many fans have been hoping for. Donnor’s film is the first, truest and respectable adaptation. But after 30 years (not considering the failed, hybrid extension of that verse in Superman Returns) I’m open to an updated, visionary interpretation of his origins.
    Very much anticipating this film!

  8. Kenneth says:

    Some interesting comments here. I am very excited by the prospect of this film – heck tell me where to mail my £GBP 10.00 and they can have it now. I will see this whichever way the critics paint it. I just hope they give Superman/Clark Kent something to really do and engage us with on the big screen. Singers Superman is a fine film, beautifully crafted but it should have had more …well, action!

    Please, please, please DO NOT laden the trailers with spoiler action and plot beats. This is a lazy trend; not everybody in the audience needs to be spoon fed. As a filmmaker myself I have purposely doled out enough plot in my work to keep people guessing. There it is.

    Mtr Synder and team – best of luck on landing this.

    directing On The Shoulders of Giants
    WOTR Ltd

    PS: I can't stand cinema popcorn. Make mine Minstrels of Maltesers.

    • Lily says:

      I completely agree. Sometimes, the teasers are so full of spoilers, I know what's going to happen before I even get there. And I, too, will see this regardless of the reviews!

      PS: Make mine Raisinets or Goobers ;)

  9. Sam brewster says:

    I must say I wear the shield of Superman right arm tat lol and as I am young I have waited my life for there to be a superman worth seeing. The old films were well corny and kinda of really fake and as for the epic fail superman returns I don’t think I ever anticipated a movie coming out so much then came te let down as I watches that terrible what might as well of been a remake with a bunch of just crazy well crap…. We all know the story and what was and what is let someone try an do it different and bring light even with a little dark side back to the hero we all love and deserve its time for superman to live again…. Please let this be the begging of a trilogy. The wb was on the right track with smallville wellat least until towards the end lol. Make this movie happen ander it be great as it should be…

  10. Doc says:

    Kevin Costner as Jonathan Kent I can see. He's got the whole Midwest wholesome thing going for him. As long as he doesn't try too hard (ie: Waterworld and Postman) or let his ego get the better of him, I can see this really working. However, Russell Crow as Jor El? I'm not saying he can't be a great actor. He was fantastic in "A Beautiful Mind". He CAN be really good! But I just don't see how they arrived at that decision. When I think Jor El, I don't think action hero. Of course, I wouldn't have though Marlon Brando, either and he did a decent job. I don't know, but it's kind of like thinking of someone to be a host for a children's show and casting Anthony Hopkins. Sure he can do it, but he just isn't the first one you would think of.

  11. Doc says:

    ._ On a side note, I really don't know what possessed them to mess with the outfit. I mean that was okay with Batman because his outfit has been changing for a long time. Superman's outfit has remained consistant (for the most part. The "S" shield has changed a bit, here and there). Why fix what isn't broken?_ In case you can't tell, I am a HUGE Superman fan. I am very worried that this will do what the movie franchise has been doing from Superman 2 on… the one thing Lex Luthor has been trying to do for ages and what "Superman Returns" has put us on the brink of… destroying Superman for good

    • karascousin says:

      Superman's costume has changed in comics. no longer does he wear the red underwear. the one in the movie is pretty close to the comics, except his belt is red in comics.

    • Mike Price says:

      This Superman will have a lot of back story in it.

      One thing is his suit. My thought on it is this, would spandex or any other earthly material hold up to fire, gun shots, extreme cold, rocks or heavy objects being thrown on it or even super fast flight? The answer is no. Nolan wants to explain about this and other things with his suit. But not just the suit such as where was Clark durning the time between Smallville and the Daily Planet? I know crab fishing seems far fetched but is it? Where is the Fortress of Solitude at? Artic Circle… Where is the Bering Sea? Arric Circle too so see it makes sense to me and if Clark is trying to find a way to fit in this world then I could see this working. I trust Nolan and Goyer with Superman and I have high hopes for the film. They will take Superman to new heights.

      • Travis says:

        I believe I saw a cartoon once that explained his body gave off a sort of energy something like a centimeter from his body which is what kept his suit protected. I could be wrong.

  12. Danotech says:

    One thing worries me. The look on his face as he sticks out his thumb. He looks like a real D-Bag with no humility.

  13. Dong Tran says:

    Love the trailer and can’t wait for the movie. Especially love the Lord of The Rings soundtrack in the trailer!

  14. Daniel says:

    I have enjoyed the latest Batman stories. I’ve been saying for a long time that the Superman story should be told again with a new twist. It is important that the story have some constant markers that make the legendary hero recognizable. I however think their should be new elements. Something that makes this story it’s own version. Adding an element of darkness and showing the choice Clark must make to be good versus bad. This is what will make this story fresh and bring in the dedicated followers and help to capture some new interest. If they can do to Superman what they have done for Batman, I welcome it and will embrace a little change. Bring on a whole new generation of “S” following. I plan to be sitting next to my 7 year old son on opening weekend.

  15. William says:

    As a Superman fan for nearly 30 yrs, I hope it honors fans and the legend of Christopher Reeve. I don’t like the costume, but I didn’t like Smallville when I first watched it, either. I’ve seen all ten seasons. I hope Man of Steel is that good.

    • rebecca says:

      I didn't like Smallville either, I liked Lois and Clark better

    • Guy says:

      Forget Reeves. I grew up watching Reeve’s Superman and while Reeves will always be in my heart as Superman, they need to forget him for this one. That’s what has been holding back Superman from finding a new audience. This day and age, aping the original Donner film won’t work. That superman doesn’t connect with kids these days. See Superman Returns as proof. They have to reinvent Superman, but still leave him his core characteristics. I guess what I am saying is they need to humanize him. Let him make mistakes. He can’t be the boyscout all the time.

  16. Curtis kalter says:

    Plz do not **** this up!!!!!!!!!!

  17. Mac says:

    there going off the new 52 storyline which i think is way better than the original

  18. rebecca says:

    This movie will be a complete failure. It will be horrible and I will NOT see this.

  19. Dex says:

    I think that it is about time to show a more realistic, believable Superman.Because we know that someone appearing with powers like that ,would be approached by the military.

  20. JHL says:

    I am really hoping this one is better than the last one. Superman Returns had some good points but Luther and the hole, making a Krypton in the sea, made no sense, was completly pointless and a big disappointment. I liked the returns, Lois thing, getting acclamated back on Earth ( which I though could lead to a sequal battling Darkside, Doomsday, brainiac or even Bizarro. ) I do not want to see another Lex or Zod movies. I am really hoping it meets the level of the Marvel Movies and Batman….. Heck maybe even bring the black suit. I do not know. Love Superman comics really hoping movie works out.

  21. AlaskanMan says:

    If the trailers are any indication of what the movie will be like, this will be a superman that world has been waiting too see. The newsroom is a thing of the past and I hope to god it isn't a huge part of this movie. They need to bring superman into the real world of today, give us a inspirational character that could exist in today's world like they did with Batman. Superman returns was an absolute failure! I truly hope that they run this movie along the same lines they did with the Batman Trilogy. And thank god they got rid of his red underpants that he always wore on the outside of his pants! I am curious what kind of razor he uses to shave with as we see him with a beard and then later clean shaven, I doubt a big razor would be able to cut through super stubble…

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