Even the most die-hard Superman fans had to admit that Superman Returns did not do as well as it should have in the box office. Falling short of its budget in the domestic box office, Superman Returns has only time left to wow Warner Bros overseas; well, that and the DVD sales. And wow is what the film will need to do if we are to get a sequel.
Superman Returns Sequel a Maybe
Some of the major strengths working for a Superman Returns sequel is that the latest installment was still one of the most popular films of the summer and director Bryan Singer has already promised to go Wrath of Kahn on the next film -- acknowledging that the second Star Trek installment saved the film franchise and, to this date, is still the best film.
According to Variety, Warner Bros does not necessarily have to worry about the Superman sequel issue just yet, as the film has still not opened in some 'key' territories overseas. Though the final numbers will take some time to count and the studio is currently acting hesitant, it has been mentioned that Warner is already trying to lock Singer down for the sequel. Remember, this director turned X-Men into X2: X-Men United.
Other than faith, Warner Bros has more than enough reason to stick with the franchise. First off, the $250 million-plus budget dumped into the film was seen as an investment by the studio into the entire franchise. Opening franchise films usually spawn blockbuster sequels.
It is also said that the expensive sets are still intact, meaning less money for the later installments and more reason to get the camera rolling once again. For a little bit of icing on the cake, the CG testing for Superman has now been perfected, meaning less money on the R&D there as well.
Though events suggest optimism, there are still reasons Warner Bros is now looking at the franchise realistically. It turns out that Superman may be too perfect of a superhero. A superhero without at least a few flaws may just be a superhero not worth watching.
The studio's timid actions aren't slowing Bryan Singer, however, who recently announced during this year's Comic Con that we could expect the next Superman film to enter theatres by 2009.
Possible? I would say likely. DVD sales have been huge for Warner Bros of late and Superman Returns should make a killing in the medium. In studionomics, more money means more sequels.