Now here’s something to get excited about! Warner Bros. has reportedly sealed the deal for Christopher Nolan to return to the director’s chair for his rabidly-anticipated sequel to The Dark Knight. As if that weren’t good news enough, the A-list director is going to take on a “godfather” role to the Superman film franchise, overseeing the development of a fresh vision of The Man of Steel.
Deadline.com brings the report, and they try to make clear that Nolan is not attached to write or direct the new Superman incarnation, which WILL NOT be a followup to Bryan Singer’s 2006 Superman Returns. The studio is trusting Nolan to guide the movie into a new direction, and just in the nick of time – legal battles have been ongoing regarding the rights to Superman and as of right now, they expire at Warner Bros. and return to the heirs of creators Siegel and Shuster in 2013. This means that the studio has to get moving if they plan to meet that deadline, and I can’t imagine a better show of support for this franchise than bringing Nolan on board.
Collider speculates that there might be some further negotiations made in order to secure sequel rights for the studio (let’s be real – why would they jump-start this franchise without plans to make more?), and suggest perhaps Nolan will bring a grittier approach to Metropolis. Personally, I think Nolan accepted this job because of the property’s colossal differences with his Batman franchise. I don’t think we’re going to see a dimly lit, dark adaptation of Superman – I think Nolan knows the clean world of Metropolis is different from anything he’s ever done and is looking forward to seeing if he can contribute to such a world instead of conforming everything to his already-established style.
As for Batman, Nolan is finishing up Inception for a July release while his brother (and frequent co-writer) Jonathan and colleague David Goyer are tackling the writing duties on the newest adventures of the Caped Crusader. Deadline emphasizes that Superman 3.0 is in the earliest stages of development, and with Batman 3 barely in the script phase – the writing team just “cracked” the idea for the story – we won’t be seeing either of these properties on the big screen for at least a couple of years. But it’s great to know that forward momentum is being made, as Nolan’s involvement bodes extremely well for both franchises.