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‘Superman: Flyby’ concept art reveals J.J. Abrams’ scrapped DC epic

Freshly discovered concept art from J.J. Abrams' abandoned 'Superman: Flyby' offers a new look at the scrapped DC movie.

Henry Cavill as Superman
Image via Warner Bros.

The future of Superman on the big and small screen remains a subject of intense discussion and debate, especially when reports emanated in the aftermath of Discovery’s WarnerMedia merger that the new regime were actively seeking to “revitalize” the Big Blue Boy Scout.

As things stand, there are currently a pair of new projects in development behind the scenes revolving around the comic book icon, neither of which involve the DCEU’s canonical Kryptonian Henry Cavill. J.J. Abrams and Bad Robot are involved in the movie being written by Ta-Nehisi Coates, which isn’t the former’s first dalliance with the character.

Abrams’ Superman: Flyby was one of the many potential blockbusters scrapped by Warner Bros. in between the disastrous Superman IV: The Quest for Peace and Superman Returns, with mooted director McG dropping out due to his noted fear of flying.

Some freshly-discovered concept art from the scrapped superhero story has now made its way online via Ryan Unicomb, though, which offers a new look at what Abrams had in store.

Tim Burton’s Superman Lives, George Miller’s Justice League: Mortal, Wolfgang Petersen’s Batman v Superman, and the Kevin Smith-scripted Superman Reborn are just several of the other reboots that joined Flyby on the scrapheap throughout the 1990s and early 2000s, before Singer’s Returns didn’t end up launching a franchise as planned.

Incredibly, it’s been 35 years since a standalone Superman sequel was released, with WB bizarrely showing very little interest in rewarding Cavill’s decade-long tenure as Kal-El with a Man of Steel 2.

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Scott Campbell

News, reviews, interviews. To paraphrase Keanu Reeves; Words. Lots of words.