MAN OF STEEL Visual Effects Supervisor Says The Film Does Away With Pretense

Earlier this week, we heard actor Laurence Fishburne and composer Hans Zimmer discuss Warner Bros.' Man of Steel and now we have words from visual effects supervisor Joe Letteri.

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By Mark Julian - 4/6/2013







After a period of relative quietness, we've heard some interesting tidbits about Man of Steel this week thanks to interviews with Laurence Fishburne and Hans Zimmer. Now a new interview has surfaced with the Emmy award winning Joe Letteri of WETA. Obviously, he couldn't go into specifics but he did speak abstractly about the film saying, I can’t talk too much about Man of Steel yet, and I haven’t seen the whole thing yet, but overall it’s the story that’s most exciting. It’s a nice re-envisioning of the story of Superman leaving his homeworld and coming to this new one." Nice to hear some praise for the film but it's Letteri's next few quotes that are truly interesting. "If you look at what Zack [Snyder] has done you’ll see that they’ve abandoned a lot of the pretense that was in the comics and asked “Can we still make this work,” he went on to say. What exactly does he mean by Snyder's abandoned some of the pretense? From earlier interviews with Zack Snyder and screenwriter David S. Goyer, they've hinted that Superman may not be quite as powerful as he is in the comic books. In a comparison to Superman Returns, it was plainly stated that their Superman can't hold up a continent. But does pretense in this context pertain to Superman's powers or to the character and personality? Or does it pertain to the peripheral aspects of the character like his ability to maintain a secret identity through a pair of eyeglasses? Previously released stills have shown that Amy Adams' Lois Lane is on the hunt for Clark Kent well before he debuts his Superman alter ego. "They’re sticking to realism as much as possible. Fantastic elements are still there but a lot of it that been trimmed back to make it feel as though this actually happened," Letteri continued. An interesting quote, one that could be interpreted in many ways. What do you think it means, particularly in this context from the film's visual effects supervisor? If this pertains to Superman's power-level, it makes sense as a too-powerful Superman really lessens the need for a Justice League.

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Man of Steel - Superman Official Trailer 2


Running Time: In post-production
Release Date: 14 June 2013 (USA)
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Starring: Henry Cavill, Michael Shannon, Amy Adams, Kevin Costner,Russell Crowe, Diane Lane, Laurence Fishburne, Christopher Meloni, Richard Schiff, Harry Lennix
Directed by: Zack Snyder
Written by: Christopher Nolan (story), David S. Goyer screenplay)

Man of Steel follows the Last Son of Krypton on his epic journey to become mankind's shinning beacon of hope for a brighter future. With the beliefs and values instilled by his adoptive parents Jonathan (Kevin Costner) and Martha (Diane Lane) Kent, a young Clark (Henry Cavill) sets out to find his place in the world. But when the nefarious General Zodd (Michael Shannon) arrives on Earth, Clark will have to choose between being a normal human or Kal-el,son of Jor-El (Russell Crowe) and humanity's greatest protector and champion. Filmed in IMAX and shot in Vancouver, Chicago and Plano, Illinois, Man of Steel will be released on June 14, 2013 by Warner Bros. Directed by Zack Snyder (300, Watchmen) with a screenplay by David S. Goyer (The Dark Knight) the Christopher Nolan (The Dark Knight Rises, Inception) produced feature film will surely be the summer blockbuster of 2013.


Source: BleedingCool
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GamerKT - 4/6/2013, 3:55 PM
"They’re sticking to realism as much as possible."


[frick]ing Nolan.
Jollem - 4/6/2013, 3:58 PM
comic books themselves are set in the "real world" and have fantastical elements to them, just like the movies. what's the problem?
CorronZenith30 - 4/6/2013, 4:02 PM
ha ha ha ha - love you guys, you make me smile!
95 - 4/6/2013, 4:08 PM
Solid stuff.
specialkail - 4/6/2013, 4:11 PM
Ha i cant wait until MOS pisses off all the superman fanboys. Supermans a douche, but the movie will prolly b prty good, xcept to superman fanboys.
thorhulk77 - 4/6/2013, 4:11 PM
@GamerKT

Lol.
Knightrider - 4/6/2013, 4:12 PM
Marvel movies have "realism" Iron Man 1 was set during a real life conflict...but they go beyond the boundaries on the real world.

Let's not forget this is the story of a flying alien from deep space. When they talk of trying to keep it realistic they merely mean how our world would react to discovering we are not alone and a alien war is happening on our planet.

I love the first Superman, but they did kinda brush over the world accepting a super-powered being without challenging it.
Luminus - 4/6/2013, 4:12 PM
Of course he can't hold up an entire Island. His hands would just go right through it, once he applied the force necessary to lift one. Also, the weight of the Island couldn't possibly be supported in such a small area. This is why Superman can't lift buildings anymore, since Crisis on Infinite Earths. The writers realize that it blatantly defies physics.
GenerationX - 4/6/2013, 4:13 PM
Not sure what he means
Yogath - 4/6/2013, 4:18 PM
Hmm. I bet there's no Krypto the Superdog, Streaky the Supercat, Comet the Superhorse, bottle city of Kandor... not bad at all.
TheFascinatingMan - 4/6/2013, 4:19 PM
Incoming fanboy assault...
SLEDGE - 4/6/2013, 4:22 PM
@luminus: and yet he is still able to push around planets...
HellsHammer - 4/6/2013, 4:25 PM
Can't wait til MOS.
aRandomSinisterClone - 4/6/2013, 4:29 PM
GOD WILLS IT! (watched Kingdom of Heaven today)
Jollem - 4/6/2013, 4:30 PM
@PeterDarker - yeah, gotham doesn't exist, but EARTH does. earth, being where gotham city is on. they have cars, shoes, schools, smartphones, waffles, etc... just like we have

"conflicts are almost always bad guy vs good guy rather than good guy vs himself (emotionally/psychologically)."

no

let's just see what they'll do with MoS, shall we? prepare to have your face melted :)
prettynucIear - 4/6/2013, 4:35 PM
Man of Steel is going to make more than Iron Man 3
KaneRomita - 4/6/2013, 4:36 PM
I would guess he means some of the pretense surrounding the secret identity.. ??
Jollem - 4/6/2013, 4:42 PM
yes, just because metropolis is not actually real doesn't really mean marvel is more "real" than d.c.

wakanda, for example. your logic is silly :)
Zessus - 4/6/2013, 4:54 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metropolis,_Illinois
ElShumway - 4/6/2013, 4:55 PM
"with the Emmy award winning Joe Letteri of WETA"

I like how Mark Julian mentions Letteri won an Emmy instead of mentioning he has 4 OSCARS for his VFX work, LOL! :P
KalElKent - 4/6/2013, 4:59 PM
The world surrounding Superman will be realistic, we already saw him flying & surviving being thrown into a bank vault, Zods black zero ship blasting metropolis & multiple spacecrafts so the fantastical elements will still be there.
DaddyTuesday - 4/6/2013, 5:05 PM
As long as Beppo the super monkey makes an appearance. What is Superman with his monkey? I'll tell what he is, a shit head that's what. Only a shit head would come from another planet and not bring a space monkey with him.
StrangerX - 4/6/2013, 5:05 PM
I don't know about yoi guys but I like the fact they want to be more grounded. All that basically means is the honest reaction of human emotions towards an alien with such power. The instead of taking a light hearted stance. Nolan and company just said what if it was real. How would the world truly react. I don't see a prob with that at all.
Boogie138 - 4/6/2013, 5:07 PM
@Luminus: thank you! dead on

@SLEDGE: not sure what your comment is actually commenting on... is it that the idea of telling a fantastical story with real world physics becomes moot if a writter has missed the point latter on? that is called sh!tty writting dude. its what some of us fans complain about when we read sh!tty stories. should supes be able to push around planets. fcuk no.
harley2011 - 4/6/2013, 5:08 PM
Sounds good about it being grounded in reality as it actually happened. You want it to look like a 2 1/2 hour videogame like the avengers of the Green Lantern.
Zessus - 4/6/2013, 5:10 PM
Marvel is just as "guilty" or innocent as DC when it comes to fictional countries and cities; the main difference is that DC is more diverse, the VAST majority of Marvel Comics take place in New York City. But while we're on the issue - Fictional Marvel Comics cities or countries:

Genosha, Caldecott, Kamar-Taj, Slorenia, Wakanda, Attilan, K'un-L'un, Lemuria, Imaya, Krakoa, Vorozheika, Latveria, Madripoor, Muir Island, Savage Land, Symkaria, Transia, and Nova Roma...

Seriously, need I go on?
CaptainObvious - 4/6/2013, 5:11 PM
Oh boy, here come people whining about realism. I have to ask a few questions:
1) Does Superman still fly?
2) Is he still from an alien race?

If you answered yes, then there is nothing to worry about.
WingDingaLing - 4/6/2013, 5:12 PM
I don't get why realism in comic book characters hated so much. I think it's actually quite exciting, and an interesting new take on superheroes. We really get to see a really close representation of how real life people would react to these supernatural things. I hope what WB does is try to create a realistic DC universe and seeing how that realistic world is shaped by these god-like beings. Kind of like Watchmen but with more super powers.
THEDARKKNIGHT1939 - 4/6/2013, 5:13 PM
I'll be down for anything but keep the glasses for goodness' sake.
m73 - 4/6/2013, 5:20 PM
Avengers is the perfect example of good film making when it comes to a comic book movie. Everything came together and even the slow parts weren't boring. Green Lantern had massive problems. I personally can't wait until we see how they deal with Clark putting on a pair of glasses making Superman disappear altogether. There's nothing grounded about that concept.
Minato - 4/6/2013, 5:33 PM
"And people still think this is going to be better than IM3 and T:TDW. Yall are all retarded...said the biggest troll in the room"
JorL5150 - 4/6/2013, 5:37 PM
Ok- I am as big an aficianado of superman as anyone I know. I love comics- all the characters. All of em. But superman is my ultimate top end all be all. I can not care about any of them as much as ....him.

And ill go on to say- that "superman the movie", salkind production and richard donner film, is my ultimate fave sci fi /fantasy film. Even further, seeing STM, when I was 4, at the theater was the happiest experience of my childhood (for what its worth).

Now having said all that- I will freely admit that superman comics- as ANY character's comics, can be over the top ridiculous and outlandish.
As much as I adore chris reeve as superman I cringe as much as anyone when you see superman 4- where superman AND clark have to be at the same double-date and we see superman demean himself and bastardise his abilities for some (admitedly clever) slapstick.

THAT does not hold up. THAT won't "fly" anymore. It was charming. But for a jaded, cynical, morally vapid society to even begin to grasp superman without calling him an outdated bible-ish boy scout, in a world that worships the selfish, the depraved, the exploitive, the cheap, the skanky, the 'dumber-the-better' -
Then we can't afford the sillier affectations.
ALL the superheroes- even batman and iron man- have had their outlandish, embarrassing in hindsight, not going-to-work-in-live-action moments.

So if "man of steel'' peels back the silly bits then that's probably for the best.

I believe this will be a wonderful film.
Facade - 4/6/2013, 5:48 PM
@THANOSxRISING...lmfao!
unknownfacts - 4/6/2013, 5:56 PM
All I know is the trailer looked epic so the movie might be epic itself just have to wait and see.
KaneRomita - 4/6/2013, 6:07 PM
I'm looking forward to the destruction of Krypton.. I'm betting they'll incorporate some of the recent retcons like Brainiac being Krypton's super-computer. And Jor-el being as bit more of an action hero.. That's all gonna be great I hope.
IgnurRant - 4/6/2013, 6:26 PM
Because Superman doesn't wear a mask the world doesn't think he has a secret identity. Why would a nigh indestructibke being pretend to be human?
DrRockso - 4/6/2013, 6:44 PM
Mmmm waffles
nikgrid - 4/6/2013, 6:50 PM
Interesting stuff. I know from a friend Richard Taylor hated the script though. But hey he loved The Hobbit and that was mediocre at best.
typicalfanboy - 4/6/2013, 6:54 PM
are the rock or channing tatum in this? if not, PASS.
Fogs - 4/6/2013, 7:18 PM
No problem on it being more grounded. Just keep the characters essence and we're fine.

In Snyder I trust.
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