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Check out Metalocalypse producer's Kickstarter campaign for a documentary on Tim Burton's unfilmed Superman Lives!

Jan. 25, 2013by: Paul Shirey

Later this year, we will potentially/arguably see the most kick ass incarnation of Superman ever to grace the big screen with MAN OF STEEL. But, the prospects were not always that great...

Following the often successful venue of Kickstarter, Metalocalypse director Jon Schnepp has started a campaign to fund a documentary on Tim Burton's failed project, SUPERMAN LIVES, which was to star Nicholas Cage.  Many of us have often speculated on what could've been with Burton's oddball style on a superhero property like Superman, especially after seeing all the batshit crazy designs and concepts he had lined up for the film, which including a rainbow robot Super Suit, Polar Bear's guarding the Fortress of Solitude, a giant spider (which was later "transferred" to Will Smith's WILD WILD WEST), and Brainiac Skull ships.  Not to mention Nicolas Cage as Clark Kent/Superman (who was rumored not to have the power of flight in the film).

Just thinking about the possibilities of how SUPERMAN LIVES would've turned out is like an awesome nightmare of epic, cult-status proportions.  There's no doubt it would've been a blasphemous, unforgivable, ridiculous, and absolute joyful affair had it ever graced our eyeballs.  Schnepp's proposal to not only dive into what went wrong with the film, but also to recreate scenes from actual script has got me burning with desire to see him get this documentary made.  I need to see the sheer madness that went into the very idea of handing Tim Burton and Nicolas Cage the Superman property.

Check out Schnepp's Kickstarter video:

If you feel as I do, head over to Schnepp's Kickstarter page, have a look, and if so inclined, make a contribution.  It's worth noting that the Kickstarter campaign for David Fincher and Blur Studios adaptation of Eric Powell's comic book, THE GOON, was a success and that film is now on its way to being made thanks to contributors.  Super cool.  Let's make this one happen, too!

Extra Tidbit: I don't know about you, but I absolutely wish that Superman Lives was made just to witness the absolute carnage. It could've been Superman's Batman & Robin...mixed with A Nightmare Before Christmas...
Source: Kickstarter

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10:36AM on 01/28/2013
It could have been a fun and campy Superman with the usual visual from Tim Burton. I really wish Superman Lives was made.
It could have been a fun and campy Superman with the usual visual from Tim Burton. I really wish Superman Lives was made.
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7:25PM on 01/26/2013
This made my day.
I am putting in $10
This made my day.
I am putting in $10
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12:30AM on 01/26/2013

Am I the only one...

...who would have preferred to see "Lives" over what eventually became "Returns?" Yeah, the aborted "Lives" probably could have been one of the biggest fusterclucks ever, but at least it would have been interesting to watch. I never read Smith's (or anyone's) original script, other than the "Evening With" story; was Jor-El in it in some form at any point like he was in "Returns" (flashback/ghost)? I only ask because if he was, presumably at that time in the 90's they could have given Brando
...who would have preferred to see "Lives" over what eventually became "Returns?" Yeah, the aborted "Lives" probably could have been one of the biggest fusterclucks ever, but at least it would have been interesting to watch. I never read Smith's (or anyone's) original script, other than the "Evening With" story; was Jor-El in it in some form at any point like he was in "Returns" (flashback/ghost)? I only ask because if he was, presumably at that time in the 90's they could have given Brando buckets of cash to come back for another two weeks and refuse to memorize his lines again. A batshit-crazy Brando during his twilight years, AND some possible Cage Rage goodness in the same scene? With polar bears? Missed opportunity, that.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to seeing this, if it gets off the ground. I assume he's taken into consideration the possible legal tangles he might run into, although I guess the "documentary" angle is the defense here.
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8:16PM on 01/28/2013
There were some Krypton scenes, Jor-El was around, but I don't think he had a major role. I've got the script. It's OK. But there are some rather silly things in it.
There were some Krypton scenes, Jor-El was around, but I don't think he had a major role. I've got the script. It's OK. But there are some rather silly things in it.
9:33PM on 01/25/2013

We can do better than a doc.....lets see the actual film

For years ive been wishing that they would make this movie as the next DC Animated film. BruceTim could produce as usual and Tim Burton could even direct. Im sure Nic Cage would be thrilled with the opporunity to voice Kal-El/Supeman/Kent. If they presented it to her the right way...Sandra might consider providing the voice of Lois, and the sam goes for Chris Rock as Jimmy. Now days stars can provide voice over talent fom the comforts of their own homes via iphone app. This could even mean a
For years ive been wishing that they would make this movie as the next DC Animated film. BruceTim could produce as usual and Tim Burton could even direct. Im sure Nic Cage would be thrilled with the opporunity to voice Kal-El/Supeman/Kent. If they presented it to her the right way...Sandra might consider providing the voice of Lois, and the sam goes for Chris Rock as Jimmy. Now days stars can provide voice over talent fom the comforts of their own homes via iphone app. This could even mean a DVD with a Best Buy exclusive mini figure of Nic Cage in the "rainbow robotic" suit....or even better...a DC Direct version. It would be awesome to finally...actually see this movie. Ok...so it woud be animated rather than live action, but the original film would have ended up being at least 80% animation or CGI any ways, and with an animated film, they would be freed from the budget costraints of live action. I would love to see this "what the heck happend" documentary, but rather as a specal feature on the animated movie DVD. Lets Kick-Start this and see if we can make it happen.
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9:40PM on 01/25/2013
Doing it as an animated film would be a very interesting idea. I guess the next best thing is what Schnepps say he has as a stretch goal, re-enacting certain segments of the film based on the script and getting artists to re-create Brainiac's skull ship and Brainiac himself. So, should it come to fruition, we'll get a glimpse of what could have been within the documentary.
Doing it as an animated film would be a very interesting idea. I guess the next best thing is what Schnepps say he has as a stretch goal, re-enacting certain segments of the film based on the script and getting artists to re-create Brainiac's skull ship and Brainiac himself. So, should it come to fruition, we'll get a glimpse of what could have been within the documentary.
9:19PM on 01/25/2013
That would be very, very cool to see. A documentary film anthology or series about the various attempts to bring Batman to the screen before Batman '89 and post-Batman and Robin would be very interesting to watch too.
That would be very, very cool to see. A documentary film anthology or series about the various attempts to bring Batman to the screen before Batman '89 and post-Batman and Robin would be very interesting to watch too.
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5:22PM on 01/25/2013
I remember back in college hearing BOTH Bruce Campbell and Kevin Smith independently talk about this when they visited to do Q&As on separate occasions. This project truly ran the spectrum of Hollywood involvement in a way no other failed movie ever has
I remember back in college hearing BOTH Bruce Campbell and Kevin Smith independently talk about this when they visited to do Q&As on separate occasions. This project truly ran the spectrum of Hollywood involvement in a way no other failed movie ever has
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3:16PM on 01/25/2013

Stuff like this

Makes me proud to be a film geek. I remember being 13 and hearing about this project. Similar to this dude, I am very curious on the through process behind this picture. I will pledge money when my next check rolls through.
Makes me proud to be a film geek. I remember being 13 and hearing about this project. Similar to this dude, I am very curious on the through process behind this picture. I will pledge money when my next check rolls through.
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3:13PM on 01/25/2013
Would love to see a documentary on what could have been.
Would love to see a documentary on what could have been.
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2:36PM on 01/25/2013

Sounds cool!

I'd love to see it... pledged $15. Seems worth a shot
I'd love to see it... pledged $15. Seems worth a shot
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2:16PM on 01/25/2013
Honestly, the script for this was pretty damn good. The weird suit make sense in the context of the script, and the weird suit only shows up for a small portion of the story (it deals with how Superman is revived).

Cage as Superman is what made me go 'WTF?!' with this film.
Honestly, the script for this was pretty damn good. The weird suit make sense in the context of the script, and the weird suit only shows up for a small portion of the story (it deals with how Superman is revived).

Cage as Superman is what made me go 'WTF?!' with this film.
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2:12PM on 01/25/2013
NIc Cage was on Howard Stern talking about it one time, and Chris Rock happened to be there the same day. Nic Cage goes, "Oh wait you were supposed to be Jimmy Olsen." And Chris Rock confirmed it.
NIc Cage was on Howard Stern talking about it one time, and Chris Rock happened to be there the same day. Nic Cage goes, "Oh wait you were supposed to be Jimmy Olsen." And Chris Rock confirmed it.
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