The “What If’s” of Hollywood are endlessly fascinating to consider, especially when they concern massive, radical projects that never made it to production. The very definition of such a film was Superman Lives, a proposed Superman reboot to be directed by Tim Burton with Nicolas Cage in the starring role. The film was to be a fairly different take on the Superman from the comics, and was all the more interesting given that it was coming from the same filmmaker who ushered Batman into the modern era just a few years prior.
If you never tire of hearing about this scrapped project, then the independent documentary The Death of “Superman Lives”: What Happened? is of interest to you. Today, a new trailer for the film was unveiled, teasing interviews with the various Superman Lives screenwriters (including Kevin Smith and Dan Gilroy), costume designer Colleen Atwood, and even Burton himself. It appears to be an incredibly involved documentary delving into the details of the proposed film, and I’m very much looking forward to checking it out.
Watch the new trailer for the film below. Directed by Jon Schnepp, The Death of “Superman Lives”: What Happened? opens in select theaters on May 1st and expands to more theaters on July 9th.
Here’s the official synopsis for The Death of Superman Lives:
The Death of “Superman Lives”: What Happened? delves into one of Hollywood’s most enthralling ‘what could have been’ stories. In 1996, Warner Brothers engaged Kevin Smith to write the screenplay (‘Superman Lives’). Director Tim Burton assembled an elite group of artists to work on Superman Lives, including Nicolas Cage as Superman. Warner Brothers scrapped the project shortly before principal photography began.
This documentary, directed by Jon Schnepp, features interviews with director Tim Burton; producers Jon Peters and Lorenzo diBonaventura; screenwriters Kevin Smith, Wesley Strick, and Dan Gilroy; production designer Rick Heinrichs; special effects artist Steve Johnson; storyboard artist Tim Burgard; costume designer Colleen Atwood, and many more. This film delivers an inside look into what would have been the most original, unexpected and cosmic Superman movie ever made.