Could the next Superman movie centre on a Communist Man of Steel?

The Man of Steel reimagined as a Soviet hero in 2003 graphic novel 'Superman: Red Son' (credit: DC Comics)
The Man of Steel reimagined as a Soviet superpower in 2003 graphic novel ‘Superman: Red Son’ (credit: DC Comics)

For some time, there’s been speculation as to if/when Warner Bros and DC Films will produce another Superman solo movie. However, speculation is now hotting up that the film they have in mind may be a great deal more radical than expected.

Comic writer Mark Millar has let slip that Warners/DC may be working on an adaptation of his 2003 graphic novel ‘Superman: Red Son.’ A standalone revisionist story, ‘Red Son’ imagines what would have happened if the infant Kal-El’s pod, sent to Earth from the dying planet Krypton, had landed in the USSR instead of the USA.

Millar revealed this information in a Twitter conversation with ‘Kong: Skull Island’ director Jordan Vogt-Roberts, who laments that he not long ago pitched an adaptation of ‘Superman: Red Son’ to the studio himself, but was turned down:

Further to this, Den of Geek profess to have confirmation from “very, very, very reliable sources” that Warner Bros are indeed exploring the possibility of a ‘Superman: Red Son’ movie – although it would be very early stages at this point.

Furthermore, DOG stress the plan is for a full-fledged live action movie, as opposed to the comparatively small-scale animated adaptations of best-selling DC graphic novels which the studio occasionally produce, such as last year’s ‘Batman: The Killing Joke.’

Superman: Red Son (credit: DC Comics)
Superman: Red Son (credit: DC Comics)

As well as recasting Superman as a champion of Communism as opposed to truth, justice and the American way, ‘Superman: Red Son’ presents Lex Luthor as a CIA scientist hired to destroy the Soviet super-threat. It also features revised takes on such other DC universe icons as Wonder Woman, Batman and Green Lantern.

The graphic novel was met with a largely positive response, and given the subject matter it garnered a great deal of critical and academic interest. Henry Cavill also cited ‘Red Son’ as one of the key Superman stories which inspired his performance in 2013’s ‘Man of Steel.’

As such, it seems likely Cavill would be open to playing this alternate universe version of Superman on the big screen – but does that mean it could necessarily happen?

Henry Cavill cited 'Superman: Red Son' as a key influence on his performance in 'Man of Steel' (credit: Warner Bros)
Henry Cavill cited ‘Superman: Red Son’ as a key influence on his performance in ‘Man of Steel’ (credit: Warner Bros)

A ‘Superman: Red Son’ movie would be a very bold proposition under any circumstances – but given current relations between the US and Russia, it might be a little too risky for what would inevitably be a megabudget blockbuster.

Even so, there’s no denying it would make for a unique, thought-provoking superhero movie, so we’ll be interested to see if there’s any further development on this story.

In the meantime, Henry Cavill will play Superman a third time in the next DC Extended Universe movie, ‘Justice League,’ opening 17 November.

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