7.4/10
2,733
30 user 16 critic

Superman (1941)

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

Directors:

Dave Fleischer, Steve Muffati (uncredited)

Writers:

Jerry Siegel (comic strip created by: Superman) (as Jerome Siegel), Joe Shuster (comic strip created by: Superman) | 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 1 Oscar. See more awards »

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Cast

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

The Mad Scientist threatens to use his Electrothanasia-Ray to cause "total destruction" to the fools who had laughed at him. Lois Lane pilots an airplane to his mountaintop laboratory, but The Scientist has her bound and gagged before she knows it. He forces her to watch on a television screen as his ray destroys a famous bridge. Next, he uses the ray to topple over the Daily Planet, but Clark Kent changes to Superman in time to save the building and put his indestructible body in front of the ray. The Mad Scientist is thrilled at the opportunity to pit his deadly machine against the Man of Steel. Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

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 »

Quotes

[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 ...
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Alternate Versions

In the scene in the editor's office, when Lois Lane runs off to "follow up her lead," Clark Kent originally asked Perry White, "Don't you think that's a dangerous mission for a girl?" In most current prints, the scene is cut so that the line now ends on the word "mission." See more »

Connections

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

User Reviews

The First of 17
10 July 2004 | by sbibb1See 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.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 September 1941 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Superman See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$50,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Fleischer Studios See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Noiseless Recording)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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