Superman (1941)

Passed  |   |  Animation, Short, Action  |  26 September 1941 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.4/10 from 1,926 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 15 critic

The Man of Steel fights a mad scientist who is destroying Metropolis with an energy cannon.



(comic strip created by: Superman), (comic strip created by: Superman) (as Jerome Siegel) , 3 more credits »
0Check in

On Disc

at Amazon

Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Animation | Short | Action
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Superman battles a criminal mastermind and his robot army.

Director: Dave Fleischer
Stars: Bud Collyer, Joan Alexander, Jackson Beck
Action | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

When underground beings explore the surface world from a deep oil well and inadvertantly cause a panic, only Superman can prevent a tragedy.

Director: Lee Sholem
Stars: George Reeves, Phyllis Coates, Jeff Corey
Animation | Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Bimbo the dog is initiated into a secret society in a sadistic 'fun house'; then Betty Boop (with dog's ears) takes a hand.

Director: Dave Fleischer
Stars: Billy Murray, Mae Questel
Adventures of Superman (1952–1958)
Action | Adventure | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The Man of Steel fights crime with help from his friends at the Daily Planet.

Stars: George Reeves, Noel Neill, Bill Kennedy
The Batman/Superman Hour (1968–1969)
Animation | Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The Dynamic Duo battles crime in Gotham City.

Stars: Casey Kasem, Ted Knight, Olan Soule
Animation | Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The legendary sailors Popeye and Sindbad do battle to see which one is the greatest.

Directors: Dave Fleischer, Willard Bowsky
Stars: Jack Mercer, Mae Questel, Lou Fleischer
Animation | Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A crash course on the history of Western musical instruments.

Directors: Ward Kimball, Charles A. Nichols
Stars: The Mellomen, Loulie Jean Norman, Charlie Parlato
Animation | Short | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Betty Boop and Bimbo run away from home, but that night they are scared by a chorus of ghosts singing the title song.

Director: Dave Fleischer
Stars: Cab Calloway and His Cotton Club Orchestra, Cab Calloway, Billy Murray
Family | Animation | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

When a giant threatens the land, the city folk mistake Mickey's boast of killing seven flies with one blow to be giants. He is then forced to fight the giant for real.

Director: Bill Roberts
Stars: Walt Disney, Marcellite Garner, Eddie Holden
Animation | Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A team of the greatest DC Comics superheroes protects Earth with the help of a pair of alien sibling apprentices.

Stars: Norman Alden, Michael Bell, Danny Dark
Animation | Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The story of a little boy who would only talk in sound effects. With story by Dr. Seuss (and Bill Scott of Rocky and Bullwinkle fame) this cartoon won the Oscar for best short subject (animated) for 1950.

Director: Robert Cannon
Stars: Marvin Miller
Family | Animation | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Making fun of "Fantasia", Bugs, Porky Pig and Porky's dog do a ballet after Elmer Fudd introduces "A Tale of the Vienna Woods."

Director: Robert Clampett
Stars: Mel Blanc, Arthur Q. Bryan, Bea Benaderet


Uncredited cast:
Joan Alexander ...
Lois Lane (voice) (uncredited)
Jackson Beck ...
Narrator (voice) (uncredited)
Bud Collyer ...
Clark Kent / Superman (voice) (uncredited)
Jack Mercer ...
The Mad Scientist (voice) (uncredited)
Julian Noa ...
Perry White (voice) (uncredited)


When Lois is kidnapped by a mad scientist, she is given a demonstration of his energy cannon as he attacks Metropolis. Only Superman can stop it in his first cinematic adventure Written by Kenneth Chisholm <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Passed | See all certifications »




Release Date:

26 September 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Mad Scientist  »

Box Office


$100,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Noiseless Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The sound of the planet Krypton exploding in the introduction was achieved by amplifying the sound of an apple being ripped apart by hand. See more »


[first lines]
Voices: Up in the sky, look: It's a bird. It's a plane. It's Superman!
Narrator: [opening narration] In the endless reaches of the universe, there once existed a planet known as Krypton, a planet that burned like a green star in the distant heavens. There, civilization was far advanced and it brought forth a race of "supermen," whose mental and physical powers were developed to the absolute peak of human perfection. But there came a day when giant quakes threatened to destroy Krypton forever. One of ...
See more »


Referenced in In the Original Geek (2014) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

The First of 17
10 July 2004 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

This is the first of what would turn out to be 17 Superman cartoons produced by the Fleischer brothers for Paramount Studios. This cartoon was released on September 26, 1941. The plot is as follows: An evil mad scientist threatens to attack the city at midnight. Lois Lane hops in her airplane and flies to the scientists hide out. The scientist captures her, and then procedes to attack Gotham. Blowing up a bridge, and attempting to topple the Empire State Building, until Superman arrives and saves the day.

The New York Times said of this cartoon " {this cartoon} is among the brothers' less successful efforts. The Fleischers show so little aptitude for -or interest in-realistic animation styles. Superman and Lois Lane are at their most wooden. So is the story's villain, a mad scientist. But the scientist's raven is wildly alive, like any real Fleischer creation, and the film sneaks in as many raven's-eye glimpses as possible. Heroic human figures have little to do with the grim, witty hallmarks of the Fleischers' imagination."

I must disagree with the Times' opinion. If one was to look at Superman comic strips from this point of time, one would see that the Superman of the comic books and the Superman of the cartoons, looks essentially the same. Yes, the raven is the most "cartoon" like character in the cartoon, but the film is still enjoyable, and is a snapshot of what cartoons were like right before the start of WWII.

5 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Name the Fleischer cartoon filming method Brian-Albin
Superman cartoons from Platinum Disc Corporation. pisces14
The best DVD version? novastrike-1
Is it just me? mskdm20
Different Mechanical Monsters opening narration? jerryrotta
The UK DVD problems jedibobster
Discuss Superman (1941) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: