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Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut (1980)

Superman II (original title)
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 Donner, Richard Lester (uncredited)

Writers:

Joe Shuster (characters), Jerry Siegel (characters) | 4 more credits »
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3 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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More Like This 

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Gene Hackman ... Lex Luthor (archive footage)
Christopher Reeve ... Clark Kent / Kal-El / Superman (archive footage)
Marlon Brando ... Jor-El (archive footage)
Ned Beatty ... Otis (archive footage)
Jackie Cooper ... Perry White (archive footage)
Sarah Douglas ... Ursa (archive footage)
Margot Kidder ... Lois Lane (archive footage)
Jack O'Halloran ... Non (archive footage)
Valerie Perrine ... Eve Teschmacher (archive footage)
Clifton James ... Sheriff (archive footage)
E.G. Marshall ... The President (archive footage)
Marc McClure ... Jimmy Olsen (archive footage)
Terence Stamp ... General Zod (archive footage)
John Ratzenberger ... Controller #1 (archive footage)
Shane Rimmer ... Controller #2 (archive footage)
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Storyline

Before Krypton exploded and Jor-El put his baby son, Kal-El, in a rocket ship to Earth, the benevolent ruler was forced to banish three irredeemable criminals to another dimension called The Phantom Zone. The trio's leader, General Zod, vowed revenge. Later, of course, Kal-El grew up to become Superman, Earth's mighty champion. A battle with the criminal mastermind, Lex Luthor, ends with Superman hurling a nuclear warhead into space where it explodes, but not harmlessly. Instead, it frees the Kryptonian threesome from their other-dimensional prison. They soon discover they have almost unlimited power (the same powers, in fact, as Superman), which they use to take over the Earth. Meanwhile, the intrepid reporter, Lois Lane, learns that her bumbling colleague, Clark Kent, is really Superman, a revelation that leads to him bringing her to his frozen Fortress of Solitude and renouncing his powers in order to make love to her. It is only when Superman and Lois return to civilization that ... Written by J. Spurlin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

As Originally Conceived and Intended


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for sequences of action violence, some language and brief mild sensuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

UK | USA

Language:

English | Russian

Release Date:

28 November 2006 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut See more »

Filming Locations:

Calgary, Alberta, Canada See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$54,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

The actress playing Lois Lane using the typewriter during the end scene is not Margot Kidder. The ending that was written, but never filmed, had Lois Lane die at the Fortress of Solitude, which in turn caused Superman to reverse time. The typewriter scene was shot in 2006, specifically for the restoration, and had an uncredited actress stand in for Lois. See more »

Goofs

Superman turns back time so that General Zod, Ursa and Non never leave the Phantom Zone, but we aren't shown how Superman deals with the missiles launched at the end of the first Superman movie - meaning, after turning back time, they should escape again, if Superman dealt with the nuclear missiles in the same manner. (This is a problem that actually stems from the first movie, where we aren't shown Superman dealing with the crisis in a different fashion after Lois dies - he shows up at Lois' car, and the aftershocks that caused her death just never happen.)

The next scene we see is meant to be the beginning of the movie again, with the Daily Planet - so after the nuclear explosions, and before the arrival of the villains - but Clark goes back to straighten out the trucker who hit him afterwards - though because Superman turned back time, basically, this event never happened - so Clark was hitting an innocent man for no reason. (The diner owner says that he just had the place fixed up - meaning the scuffle did occur, and Clark claims he's been working out, meaning from the last time they saw him, when he was beaten - however, again, this never happened because Superman turned back time again.)

Moreover, towards the end of the film, Superman destroys the Fortress of Solitude with his heat-sight - the Fortress of Solitude should be reconstructed (and with Jor-El available to guide Kal-El again) due to Superman turning back time again. The time travel device, beyond complicating the film's time-line, nullifies Jor-El's sacrifice and Superman's lesson, as after turning back time, things should be "back to normal" again.

Furthermore, if Superman's end-game was to turn back time all along, he didn't have to fight the super-villains in Metropolis or in the Fortress of Solitude at all - he could have turned back time immediately after regaining his powers, or following the Metropolis fight. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Jor-El: I ask you now to pronounce judgment on those accused. On this... this mindless aberration, whose only means of expression are wanton violence and destruction; on the woman Ursa, whose perversions and unreasoning hatred of all mankind have threatened even the children of the planet Krypton; finally, General Zod. Chief architect of this intended revolution and author of this insidious plot to establish a new order amongst us... with himself as absolute ruler. You have heard the ...
See more »

Crazy Credits

After the Warner Bros./DC Comics logos, there is an on-screen dedication "in loving memory" of Christopher Reeve, "Without whom we would have never believed a man could fly". See more »

Connections

Version of Krypto the Superdog (2005) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
The tru-ER version of this film.
17 November 2006 | by rhaynes1974See all my reviews

I snatched my Ultimate Superman collection out of the delivery guys hands today and eagerly ripped open the packaging to be confronted by the beautiful and incredibly comprehensive box-set that Warners have put together.

But the real reason I bought this was for the brand new restored cut of Richard Donner's Superman II, so I switched on my projector and watched it on a "BIGGISH" screen - not quite the way it was meant to be seen but close enough.

Anyhow - I digress - some of the "updating" of the visual effects did look a little "cheap" however I loved the inclusion of some brilliantly funny new moments between Chris Reeve and Margot Kidder.

The dramatics were there, the tension was there - but the movie had a real letdown of an ending which I won't reveal here - but suffice to say, it was a dramatic disappointment. I understand that certain elements hadn't been finished and due to budgte restraints only a certain amount could be done - but sheesh guys you could have done a little better than that.

It's a real shame since the movie really is quite different and actually in many respects a much better film than the original theatrical version - just a little marred by this somewhat tacked on ending and "cheap" digital effects thrown in using today's technology - but a truly fascinating watch all the same...


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