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Superman II (1980)

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Superman agrees to sacrifice his powers to start a relationship with Lois Lane, unaware that three Kryptonian criminals he inadvertently released are conquering Earth.

Directors:

Richard Lester, Richard Donner (uncredited)

Writers:

Jerry Siegel (character created by: Superman), Joe Shuster (character created by: Superman) | 4 more credits »
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3,933 ( 428)
3 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gene Hackman ... Lex Luthor
Christopher Reeve ... Superman / Clark Kent
Ned Beatty ... Otis
Jackie Cooper ... Perry White
Sarah Douglas ... Ursa
Margot Kidder ... Lois Lane
Jack O'Halloran ... Non
Valerie Perrine ... Eve Teschmacher
Susannah York ... Lara
Clifton James ... Sheriff
E.G. Marshall ... The President
Marc McClure ... Jimmy Olsen
Terence Stamp ... General Zod
Leueen Willoughby ... Leueen
Robin Pappas Robin Pappas ... Alice
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Storyline

Picking up where "Superman: The Movie" left off, three criminals, General Zod (Terence Stamp), Ursa, (Sarah Douglas), and Non (Jack O'Halloran) from the planet Krypton are released from the Phantom Zone by a nuclear explosion in space. They descend upon Earth where they could finally rule. Superman, meanwhile, is in love with Lois Lane (Margot Kidder), who finds out who he really is. Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman) escapes from prison and is determined to destroy Superman by joining forces with the three criminals. Written by Keith Howley <lald@ptdprolog.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Man of Steel meets his match! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | UK | Canada

Language:

English | French | Russian

Release Date:

19 June 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Superman 2 See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$54,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$14,100,523, 21 June 1981

Gross USA:

$108,185,706
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (Richard Donner Cut)

Sound Mix:

70 mm 6-Track (MegaSound encoding) (70 mm prints)| Dolby (35 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

An early version of the script had four Kryptonian exile villains. Jak-El (a name probably inspired by the German and Danish name "Jakel", the trickster handpuppet in the Punch and Judy tradition) was supposed to be an evil prankster and source of comic relief. He is described as "a psychopathic jokester, whose pranks and practical jokes are only funny to him when they cause death and suffering to others." The character was never cast. See more »

Goofs

As Superman flies from Lois's penthouse apartment, crew members are visible inside her apartment. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Krypton guard: Alert, alert, alert.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits incorporate an extensive amount of footage from the first Superman movie. See more »


Soundtracks

Lovers Fly North
(uncredited)
Composed and Conducted by Ken Thorne
Original Material Composed by John Williams
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
A perfect companion piece to the first film.
20 July 2006 | by Max_cinefilo89See all my reviews

In 1978, Richard Donner's Superman made us believe a man could fly. in 1980 the sequel, partly directed by Donner (he was sacked and replaced by Richard Lester, who received the sole directing credit) managed to do it again, and better.

Fans of Sam Raimi's Spider-Man movies may find similarities between Superman II and the second Spidey flick: this new installment sees our hero (Christopher Reeve) give up his powers (sound familiar?) so that he can spend the rest of his life with the beloved Lois Lane (Margot Kidder), who has accidentally discovered his identity. Unfortunately, his happiness won't last, as the world faces new danger: Kryptonian criminal General Zod (Terence Stamp) and his sidekicks (Sarah Douglas and Jack O'Halloran), who were imprisoned in the Phantom Zone at the beginning of the first movie, are suddenly free and decide to conquer Earth. On top of that, they find an ally in Lex Luthor (Gene Hackman), recently escaped from jail. Looks like Supes picked the wrong week to quit his job...

Like its predecessor, Superman II works because the filmmakers focus on the contrast between his body and his heart: one's indestructible, the other is not, and that's why he's a believable, likable character (no wonder Bryan Singer based his Superman Returns on the first two S-movies). The contrast is made even stronger by the fact that this time he must choose between a normal life and what he vowed to do with his abilities.

Those looking for jaw-dropping action shouldn't worry either: the scenes where Superman fights his three opponents (with the same powers as he) in the middle of Metropolis are still as awesome as they were 26 years ago, a true joy for the eye.

And as usual, the acting is top notch: Reeve gives Superman that special mix of strength and vulnerability that make him unique, while the ruthless yet calculating Stamp and the hilarious Hackman form a perfect villain duo.

So, wanna see a superhero film with something special? Superman I and II have it all.


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