In association with the amazing supermanjaviolivares.net I’m ecstatic to present the above photographs taken last week in from the Festival Internacional De Cine De Accion Y’Adventura in the Mostra de Valencia, Spain.
This venue is currently playing host to the largest archive of Warner Brothers original props and costumes from their Superhero franchises ever seen in public exhibition, with entire halls devoted to both Batman and Superman franchises.
On display in the Superman gallery are both Christopher Reeve and Brandon Routh’s Superman costumes, and for the first time outside of the WB museum, Marlon Brando’s original Jor-El costume.
The exhibits are notable for the fact the pieces are totally accessible to the public as they are not behind barriers nor shielded by acrylic cases so these expensive garments can be researched as never before. My sincere thanks to SuperFan Javier Olivares Tolosa for providing what is the best photo reference of this most complex of costumes to date.
An exhaustive article written by me about the Reeve costume can be found here
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 rebranded The London Film Museum) last year.
Not only is the reworked portrait of Christopher Reeve generated from one of Stuart Freeborn’s few surviving lifecasts 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…
The original waxwork of Christopher Reeve’s Superman was given pride of place in the exit stairwell of London’s Madame Tussauds for many years after its introduction in 1979. The figure was suspended mid-air in a dramatic flying pose and had strobe lighting and a strategically placed fan to billow out the cape. Concrete rubble was distributed around a hole in the floor to create the effect of Superman bursting up through the ground and the effect was quite breathtaking, at least to my teenage self and all the other kids who stood around it yelling ‘Look! Its Superman! Christopher Reeve!!”
While the likeness was probably not as well-realised as the elaborate display across the pond (at the Movieland Wax Museum) and the hair somewhat flat, the costume had clearly been made as per the originals (supplied by Bermans & Nathans) to include a lightweight cape for movement. By the early 2000’s however, time and wear had taken its toll and like many Superman Movie costumes, the colour had faded dramatically and so a replica costume was produced for the figures relocation to the ‘Movie Room’, (bottom pic) where it would reside until the figure was retired sometime after 2010. If any Superfans out there have any more images of the figure (prior to the costume switch) I’d love to hear from you..!