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Superman Returns (2006)

PG-13 | | Action, Sci-Fi | 28 June 2006 (USA)
2:34 | Trailer
Superman returns to Earth after spending five years in space examining his homeworld Krypton. But he finds things have changed while he was gone, and he must once again prove himself important to the world.


Bryan Singer


Michael Dougherty (screenplay), Dan Harris (screenplay) | 5 more credits »
315 ( 174)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 12 wins & 41 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Brandon Routh ... Clark Kent / Superman
Kate Bosworth ... Lois Lane
Kevin Spacey ... Lex Luthor
James Marsden ... Richard White
Parker Posey ... Kitty Kowalski
Frank Langella ... Perry White
Sam Huntington ... Jimmy Olsen
Eva Marie Saint ... Martha Kent
Marlon Brando ... Jor-El (archive footage)
Kal Penn ... Stanford
Tristan Lake Leabu ... Jason White
David Fabrizio ... Brutus
Ian Roberts ... Riley
Vincent Stone Vincent Stone ... Grant
Jack Larson ... Bo the Bartender


Following a mysterious absence of several years, the Man of Steel comes back to Earth in the epic action-adventure Superman Returns, a soaring new chapter in the saga of one of the world's most beloved superheroes. While an old enemy plots to render him powerless once and for all, Superman faces the heartbreaking realization that the woman he loves, Lois Lane, has moved on with her life. Or has she? Superman's bittersweet return challenges him to bridge the distance between them while finding a place in a society that has learned to survive without him. In an attempt to protect the world he loves from cataclysmic destruction, Superman embarks on an epic journey of redemption that takes him from the depths of the ocean to the far reaches of outer space. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


On June 30, 2006! Look Up In The Sky!


Action | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some intense action violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »





English | German | French

Release Date:

28 June 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Red Sun See more »


Box Office


$270,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$52,535,096, 2 July 2006

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

DTS | SDDS | Dolby Digital | Sonics-DDP (IMAX version)



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


In an interview on Larry King Live (1985), Bryan Singer said that had he not had access to John Williams' original music, he would not have done the film. See more »


Immediately following the planting of the crystal/kryptonite seed, a cigar is dropped into the utility corridor and a natural gas line ruptures, the cigar ignites the natural gas. In reality a cigar burns at around 400°F while natural gas ignites at around 1000°F, therefore the cigar could not possibly have ignited the natural gas flooding the corridor. See more »


[first lines]
Jor-El: You will travel far my little Kal-El. But we will never leave you. Even in the face of our deaths. You will make my strength your own. You will see my life through your eyes as your life will be seen through mine. The son becomes the father, and the father, the - The son.
See more »

Crazy Credits

When the Warner Bros logo appears, the opening bars of the John Williams "Superman" theme are heard. See more »

Alternate Versions

In the IMAX presentation, four scenes (totalling about 20 minutes) were converted from 2D to 3D: The flashback to Clark Kent's youth on the farm, the Shuttle/777 rescue, the rescue of the sinking ocean liner, and the final flyover before the credits. Bryan Singer developed a cue featuring an icon of Clark's glasses flashing in green at the bottom of the screen when it is time to put them on, and then with a red circle/slash over when it is time to take them off. See more »


As Time Goes By
(1931) (uncredited)
(From the 1932 Broadway show "Everybody's Welcome")
Written by Herman Hupfeld
(played during Warner Brothers logo)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

Choses to be sentimental instead of entertaining.
4 August 2006 | by Boba_Fett1138See all my reviews

OK Superman is back (and I'm glad he is)! But not with a blast.

It's a recent trend in superhero movies to give the story and its character a deeper meaning and more realistic emotions. Most recent example of this is of course "Batman Begins" and other examples are "Spider-Man" and "Hulk". "Superman Returns" also tries to put this in the movie. It however does not suit the main character and is not true to the spirit and atmosphere of the other original previous Superman movies. The movie takes itself far too serious with as a result that it isn't always a fun or entertaining one to watch. It tries to be more than just another superhero movie but it never knows to fully convince.

The movie in the beginning takes it time to explain the story for the viewers who haven't seen the '78 original and its sequel, on which this movie is a direct sequel again. I can't say that I think this was the right choice. The movie would had been better of if the action, so to speak, started off immediately and didn't wasted any time on re-introducing all of the characters. The movie does however still show lots of respect to the original, mainly with its use of music. The opening credits are done in the exact same style as the original and they also didn't changed a not with its music, which really was the right thing to do. Let's be honest, the opening credits of the original '78 "Superman" movie are perhaps the most spectacular and most awesome opening credits of all time, which is mainly thanks to the John Williams music. Director Bryan Singer and John Ottman also seemed to realize and understand this and they use the John Williams at the exact right moments in the movie. John Ottman, on his turn, also composed a wonderful and suiting musical score on his own, complete with a wonderful new Superman theme.

The movie feels like two separate stories. One story concentrates on Superman/Clark Kent and the other on his eternal villain Lex Luthor, who is out of prison again, due to the absence of Superman during his court hearing. The movie doesn't feel as a complete whole and it is not until when the two stories mix that the movie starts to take pace and become truly interesting to watch. This however happens too late into the movie to completely save it.

The story itself is also very simple, a bit too simple for my taste. It also lacks some of the fundamental things a Superman movie needs. Superman movie needs to be fun, colorful and perhaps even a bit campy. Bryan Singer's Superman world is mostly dark. Also the humor is wrong. The movie does have humor in it but not the right kind. Superman movies needs slapstick, over-the-top sort of humor. The humor and atmosphere in this movie really doesn't suit the Superman character. It makes you wonder; Perhaps isn't the Superman character a bit too old fashioned for the 21th century? The movie concentrates too much on the dramatic and realistic aspects of the movie, such as the whole love triangle and problems between Superman, Lois Lane and her fiancée played by James Marsden, which is far from interesting or compelling.

The movie still could had a great one, despite its plot, if it had been a more entertaining one. The movie is lacking in some real good action. Basically the biggest and most spectacular action sequence of the movie is already in the beginning (the plane sequence). After that the movie and its action slows down and the end of the movie could had really used a big and spectacular finale. Instead now the movie doesn't know how and when to end. The ending is overlong, over-dramatic and completely unnecessary. They could had basically summed things up in 5 minutes but the movie chooses an overlong sentimental ending instead.

Brandon Routh is perfectly cast as Superman and he also really looks like Christopher Reeve. As expected Kevin Spacey steals the show as Lex Luthor but his presence is perhaps not as spectacular or as memorable as Gene Hackman's. Kate Bosworth is really miscast as Lois Lane. Lois Lane should be a strong, independent woman with lots of life experience. With all respect but Kate Bosworth looks like a fragile teenager.

Visually the movie is great and spectacular. All of the special effects are top-class (Oscar nod, no doubt) and they provide the movie with its best moments.

I'm glad Superman is back on the silver screen but the the movie itself is nothing too remarkable. In the end it's a pretty forgettable, overlong movie, that is too simple, even while it tries to be so much more than just a superhero movie.

I don't mean to sound cruel but you're better of waiting for the DVD. It's not really a movie worth seeing in cinemas.



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