Ratner Talks Superman
New director chats about casting and rival superhero pics.
September 17, 2002 - The Chicago Sun-Times recently chatted with newly christened Superman director Brett Ratner, who replaced McG as the helmer of Warner Brothers' forthcoming comic book movie revamp. Ratner has directed a number of high-profile pics, including the Rush Hour series and the upcoming Hannibal Lecter flick Red Dragon. The Sun-Times describes Ratner as "confident" about the long-in-development Superman project. "This is the movie Hollywood has been trying to make for the last seven years," Ratner reminded the paper.
Ratner has been very open with the press when it comes to discussing casting for the film. The young filmmaker reveals that he'd prefer "a total unknown" in the title role, dismissing any further hope of his Family Man star Nicolas Cage as the Man of Steel ("[He's] too old now."). "I'm going to do a massive hunt for my Superman first," says the director. "I also have no idea who would be good for Lois Lane."
Furthermore, Ratner dismissed Fox 411's claim that Keanu Reeves had been chosen to play Superman. According to Latino Review, the director shot down the rumor of Reeves' casting at a Red Dragon press junket this past weekend. Ratner did, however, confirm reports that his Red Dragon star, Sir Anthony Hopkins, was in the running for the role of Superman's doomed father, Jor-El.
Ratner also advised The Chicago Sun-Times that the new Superman movie "will be the origins story with a fantastic script that explains more than you've ever seen before. ... Can you imagine a really good Superman in 2003 with all the new special effects? I think that could be something amazing." Ratner added that the filmmakers are "in the early stages [of pre-production] and we haven't scouted any specific cities as a model [for Metropolis]."
The director also confirmed that the recently shelved Batman vs. Superman is as dead as Great Caesar's ghost. "I know you've heard about this Batman vs. Superman movie, but that's getting scrapped because of my film," says Ratner. "Anyway, I don't see how that film could have been done because Superman would have certainly killed Batman."
Superman will begin filming next year for either a late 2003 or 2004 debut. The screenplay was penned by J.J. Abrams (TV's Alias).