Brendan Fraser Recalls Almost Playing Superman in Abandoned DC Movie
Brendan Fraser once came very close to portraying Superman in a movie written by J. J. Abrams, and the actor recently revealed what the casting process was like. The star of The Mummy apparently went so far as to put on the actual red-and-blue suit, and couldn’t help but admire himself in the mirror when doing so. “You feel kind of invincible, [like] ‘I can fly,'” Fraser says. He adds: “The cape actually makes you think you have the power of flight even though you know you don’t.” Still, while the opportunity to become Clark Kent never came to fruition for Fraser, the actor remains proud about being able to put on the tights, boasting, “I’ve got that stripe! I did it.”
With Brett Ratner at the helm, the planned project would have been titled Superman: Flyby. The story would have been set in an alternate version of the Superman story where the planet Krypton doesn’t explode. Rather, Kal-El (the future Superman) is sent to Earth by his father to avoid a large-scale civil war. Once he grows up to become the Man of Steel, Kal-El’s cousin Ty-Zor invades Earth with an army of sinister Kryptonians, leading to a showdown between the two. To keep these story details private, Warner Bros. went to great lengths to keep a lid on the screenplay, such as printing it on crimson paper with black ink so it couldn’t be photocopied. “I was allowed to sit in an office and read it for an hour. It was like a covert operation,” Frasher says of the experience.
While Brendan Fraser was in close contention, he wasn’t the only actor to nearly take the starring role in Flyby. Other names in the running at the time include Ashton Kutcher (That ’70s Show), Matt Bomer (Doom Patrol), Paul Walker (The Fast and the Furious), and James Marsden (Westworld). The project wound up stalling in development, leading to Rattner making the decision to abandon the project. McG then stepped in to take the reins, only to depart the production himself soon after. Despite Abrams’ pleas for Warner Bros. to let him direct his screenplay himself, the decision was made to go with Bryan Singer instead. At this point, the Flyby script was scrapped entirely in favor of going in a new creative direction for what would become Superman Returns.
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While Superman has long been one of the planet’s most celebrated and beloved superheroes, only a small handful of actors have managed to play him on the big screen. The very first man to do so in a live-action movie was George Reeves in the 1951 flick Superman and the Mole Men. Famously, Christopher Reeve later played the part for four movies in a row, beginning with Richard Donner’s 1978 classic Superman. Brandon Routh then took on the part for Superman Returns, portraying the same version of the character as Reeve. Most recently, Henry Cavill stepped into the role for the character’s appearances in the DCEU, including his own Man of Steel.
As of now, there’s no telling when we might see the Man of Steel flying back to theaters. With there being a lot of focus on an upcoming Supergirl movie set to shoot in 2020, it would appear a new Superman movie is years away from release. As for Fraser, he would eventually find his way into a DC adaptation anyway, as he can now be seen on the DC Universe series Doom Patrol. This information comes to us from Yahoo.
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