7 December 2017

INVERSE – The Man of Steel did not come back in black in Justice League, but don’t blame the camera crew. Scenes featuring Superman, played by Henry Cavill, wearing a black version of his costume were cut from the theatrical release of Justice League.

Fabian Wagner, an accomplished cinematographer who shot some of the biggest episodes of Game of Thrones — both “Hardhome” and “Battle of the Bastards” — was tasked with bringing Zack Snyder’s vision for the DC superhero movie to life. In an email interview with Inverse, Wagner says scenes with Superman wearing his black suit were removed in the final cut.

“There were [scenes shot],” Wagner said. “It’s a cool looking costume. Sadly, we didn’t see that either in the final cut.”

In 1993, a year after Superman was killed by Doomsday in The Death of Superman, the titular hero came back to life in Superman: The Man of Steel #25 and Superman#81 wearing a black jumpsuit with a silver “S” instead of his usual red/yellow symbol. (Also, he didn’t wear a cape.) Much like Spider-Man’s symbiote costume, the black variant is cool because, well, it’s black. It was the ‘90s.

Superman was killed by Doomsday in Batman v Superman. And though it played out differently than in the comics, Doomsday pretty much looked the way he should have. So it made sense that fans expected to see Henry Cavill wearing a black costume for Supe’s resurrection in Justice League. Cavill even teased the costume on his Instagram page during filming, and some tie-in merchandise was produced with the design. Now, the movie’s cinematographer says there are scenes with a black Superman costume, they’re just on the cutting room floor.

In fact, Wagner says “quite a few scenes” didn’t make the theatrical release of Justice League, not just black and silver Superman. “Zack takes his time with telling the stories, and I’ve always liked that about his movies. There are a few scenes that I was very much looking forward to seeing which unfortunately got cut.”

One other scene Wagner refers to is a scene from the final trailer, in which Alfred (Jeremy Irons) talks to an off-screen figure while doing maintenance on the Batmobile. “They said you’d come,” he says, looking up at the mystery character. “Let’s hope you’re not too late.”

Wagner, who shot the scene, is keeping mum in regards to whom Alfred is speaking to. (Most fans think it was Superman.) But he promises that maybe one day fans will finally know for sure. “It was a great scene to shoot,” he says. “It was one of my favourites and also didn’t make it.”

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