A Superman Solo Film Is on the Way From Ta-Nehisi Coates and J.J. Abrams [Updated]

He’s back.
He’s back.
Image: DC Comics

A new Superman movie is finally in the works from a superhuman team of talents.

Writer Ta-Nehisi Coates is penning the film for Warner Bros., and it will be produced by J.J. Abrams. There’s no word on a director, a star, a plot, or anything of that nature just yet. But, really, all you need to say is Superman, Coates, and Abrams, and it’s hard to not get excited.

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The site Shadow and Act first reported the news, which was then confirmed by Deadline, and io9 also independently confirmed it. “To be invited into the DC Extended Universe by Warner Bros., DC Films, and Bad Robot is an honor,” Coates told Shadow and Act. “I look forward to meaningfully adding to the legacy of America’s most iconic mythic hero.”

Abrams also gave a quote to Shadow and Act. “There is a new, powerful and moving Superman story yet to be told. We couldn’t be more thrilled to be working with the brilliant Mr. Coates to help bring that story to the big screen, and we’re beyond thankful to the team at Warner Bros. for the opportunity,” he said.

This, of course, raises so many questions, the first of which is about star Henry Cavill. He’s been quoted saying he’d like to reprise his role as the Man of Steel, but from these reports, it seems like there will be some kind of search for a new actor. In fact, after this news first broke, Hollywood Reporter reporter Borys Kit said, “Will audiences be introduced to a Black Superman? That is the intent and something that the studio has been trying to find a way in for months if not a year or two, according to sources.”

As for a director, Abrams certainly could be a contender and, recently, the Russo Brothers were quoted as saying they would be making a superhero movie in the near future in a surprising place. DC would certainly be that for the directors of multiple Marvel movies. That’s all speculation though.

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“Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me opened a window and changed the way many of us see the world,” chairman of Warner Bros., Toby Emmerich, said in a statement. “We’re confident that his take on Superman will give fans a new and exciting way to see the Man of Steel.”

Years ago, Abrams wrote a script for a Superman movie that became widely available on the internet called Superman: Flyby. At the time, it was widely divisive but it did show that the then-burgeoning filmmaker had an interest in the character. As for Coates, few modern authors are as respected or beloved. In addition to multiple best-selling books tackling all matter of topics, his runs writing Black Panther and Captain America for Marvel have set new standards for both characters. Abrams has also stepped his toe into comic writing as of late.

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This new Superman movie, which will also be produced by Hannah Minghella, is in very early development, so there’s no timeline beyond just getting it right at the moment. However, we will see a Kryptonian on the big screen again before then in Andy Muschietti’s The Flash in the form of Supergirl, played by Sasha Calle.

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Update 2/26/2021, 12:45 p.m. ET: This post has been updated with the Hollywood Reporter quote about casting.


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Entertainment Reporter. NYU Cinema Studies Alum. Formerly Premiere, EW, Us Weekly, and /Film. AP Award-Winning Film Critic & CCA member. Loves Star Wars, posters, Legos, and often all three at once.

DISCUSSION

chancejohnt
ChanceJohnT

But, really, all you need to say is Superman - Coates - Abrams and it’s hard to not get excited.

Ah... so we’re writing from the perspective of Bizarro world.

Abrams is basically Diet Zack Snyder.  All the dumb at 1/2 the calories.