Custom Jor-El…

With the breaking news that the license for the 1978 Superman Movie has been acquired by action-figure titans Hot Toys – their announcement that Christopher Reeve will be getting the DX (Deluxe) treatment will be the fulfilment of a long-awaited dream by fans all over the world.
In light of the upcoming release this winter – the pictures above showcase Hot Toys earlier release from the Superman Returns license – Marlon Brando’s Jor-El.
Forging a reputation for unbeatable quality and detail in their figures, its no surprise Hot Toys are regarded as market leaders and responsible for elevating the action-figure into an art-form. From articulation to life-like headsculpts and an incredible array of accessories, the ever-expanding portfolio contains a variety of licenses from movies to military to Popstar.
With the acquisition of rights to Brando’s likeness after his death in 2004 – Hot Toys produced both a 50’s and Godfather version before surprising fans with a perfect recreation of Kal-El’s father. With the license restricted to his posthumous appearance in Returns, Jor-El was adorned in his white Kryptonian robes but sporting a Brandon Routh style \S/ crest on his tunic. I sought to modify mine to reflect his appearance in Superman; The Movie by adding the one as designed by Yvonne Blake. More info and about this figure (including pics) here.

Behind the (Deleted) Scenes – The Metro Club…

Superman IVMetro_Club2Superman IVReeve And HemingwayShot on location in London’s Hippodrome nightclub in November 1986, the crystal-clear stills above were the only evidence for decades that the scenes set in the grand opening of ‘The Metro Club’ were indeed filmed, serving to develop the relationship between Clark and Lacy and also introduce the archaic Nuclearman I. 

According to the script, Clark not only manages to jump a waiting Newlywed couple past the mean bouncers at Super-Speed but then sweep Lacy literally off her feet by levitating whilst in a clinch.  This entire sequence may have not made it to the screen but did make it into the comic-book adaptation, where the scripted dialogue is also nicely preserved. 

Allegedly the only reason for the footage exclusion in the Superman IV; Deluxe Edition DVD was the lack of music copyright which has since been rectified. UK pop group Re-Flex provided tracks for these scenes which was finally released in its entirety in the Superman; The Music Boxed Set. Hopefully in future a Blu-Ray release will reinstate it, finally making the deleted scenes complete, albeit in workprint form…

UK Exhibitor Campaign Books…

In an age long before the digital press pack, these magazines would be distributed to Cinemas in advance of release. Containing the Movie synopsis, cast info, competitions and ad. slicks of varying size – they would also be the source of ordering posters and 10×8 photographs. Increasingly scarce due to their fragility and the fact they were usually disposed of after use – this complete set is in excellent condition…

Supermannequin…

A truly incredible and unique display – this intricate life-size creation was on loan from Stephen Lane’s (Propstore of London) personal collection to the Movieum Of London (now renamed the London Film Museum) last year. Not only is the reworked portrait of Christopher Reeve generated from one of Stuart Freeborn’s few surviving life-casts but the costume is 100% original and one of the finest examples still in existence today.  Worn by Reeve and screen-matched to the Luthor’s lair confrontation scenes in Superman: The Movie and the alleyway change scene in Superman II, the costume is ideally preserved on a custom mannequin and standing proudly in the magnificent rooms of County Hall, a breathtaking and eerie experience to behold. The detail evident in the images above were so revealing I was able to compile arguably the most definitive article to date about the Superman costume hosted exclusively here on Jim Bowers’ incomparable capedwonder.com where you can see more images from my shoot on the day…

Tom Mankiewicz, 1942 – 2010….

A rare interview from the Starlog yearbook with the ‘Creative Consultant’ who only recently received full & true recognition for his contribution to the Superman Movie mythos. Chances are you’ve seen most of the pictures he’s written without even realising- especially if you are a fan of the James Bond franchise. Tom has a special place in the hearts and minds of all Superman fans and we salute him, he will be sadly missed…