Zack Snyder Directing Superman

Warners stays in house for the hero

And then there was one: In a move that won’t really surprise anyone considering how close he is to Warner Bros., Zack Snyder, the man behind Watchmen, 300 and the new owl ‘toon Legends of the Guardians, has been chosen to direct the studio’s latest attempt at bringing Superman back to the silver screen.

Deadline was first to break the news that Snyder was in the middle of forging a deal to make the movie with Chris Nolan executive producing. David Goyer cracked the concept and has written the script, which he'll work on with Snyder and the rest to refine before the director gets to work shooting.

But since that initial announcement, Snyder’s been chatting to all sorts of sources with the puppy dog enthusiasm he seems to have in deep supply. If you’re not a fan of people who use the word “awesome” a lot, be warned…

“It's early yet, but I can tell you that what David and Chris have done with the story so far definitely has given me a great insight into a way to make him feel modern. I've always felt he was kind of awesome. I'll finish Sucker Punch and get right at it,” Snyder tells Deadline. That’s one for the awesometer.

“I feel awesome,” he gushes to the LA Times. “I feel super awesome.” Ding! Ding! We’re up to three.

“In the initial meetings, he’s been super amazingly smart and also amazingly kind, filmmaker-to-filmmaker,” he tells the Heat Vision blog about his discussions with Nolan, in which he apparently didn’t put on a big show to win the job, but did express how close he is to the character. “I have great respect for him. The process has been amazing so far, and it looks like nothing but pluses.” Huh… Guess he’d used up his allotment of awesome for the day, there.

Snyder’s hiring caps a search that seems to have gone a lot quicker than some other recent superhero-related jobs, but has still taken in big names such as Ben Affleck, Robert Zemeckis and Tony Scott. Now of course we’re going to be thrown into the hunt for a man to fill the tights and cape, which we bet will lead to someone making the Snyder-Sucker Punch-Jon Hamm connection, despite the fact that the Mad Men star has laughed off the idea that he’d be Supes since he considers himself too old.

And finding a Man of Steel will probably be easier than balancing the movie’s tone, which suffers from the fact that it’s so hard to make Superman correctly when he’s such a heroic character lacking the shades of a Batman. Still, Goyer and Nolan seem convinced they’ve cracked it, so perhaps working with Snyder, they can come up with something cool.

Rumours have been flying with regards to possible plotlines, but the biggest hit on the story seems to revolve around the return of the beloved General “kneel before” Zod. If that pans out, we fear for whoever has to step into the black pantsuit made famous by Terence Stamp.

Warners will be feeling some relief, since it really needs to get the film moving to capitalise on the time it has left to exploit the character before some of the copyrights revert back to the original creators’ estates, and has a Christmas 2012 release schedule on its wish list. But what do you think? Are you happy with the choice? Judging by the results of our reader poll last week, this was your choice. Do you worry he’ll bring a little too much of his visual style (read: slow motion) to Supes? Or does he have the chops to pull off something dazzling. Sorry… something awesome. Zack would probably prefer that.