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Warner Brothers Puts Superman On Hold

Given all the legal drama that has occurred over the last few months, this really shouldn’t come as much of a surprise…but it’s still disappointing.

Thompson on Hollywood is reporting that Warner Brothers has put a hold on the development of any feature film based on the Superman property.

Nothing. The project is on hold as the studio waits to emerge from legal limbo over the fate of the Superman heirs. It’s about who controls what divided rights going forward and who owes what to whom when. Warners may be trying to settle with the Siegel and Shuster families, who in 2013 will retrieve the copyright of the Superman material published in Detective Comics’ Action Comics Vol. 1, in order to merge all the Superman rights.

As the studio is waiting to resolve the legal dispute, there’s no movement on the project. Production execs at Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros. have been culling the various pitches that have come in, and are eager to start development on a sequel. Who knew, when Brandon Routh played the Man of Steel in Superman Returns, that fans would split so divisively? The 2006 movie, which paid homage to the Richard Donner Superman movies without completely updating the franchise the way Christopher Nolan did with Batman Begins, grossed $391 million worldwide off strong reviews for a genre sequel. But it cost more than $232 million. Warners felt it could have performed better with more action and a powerful villain—and no Superman kid. So Singer was taken off the franchise.