A Surprise 'The Flash' Cameo Is Finally Giving This Notorious Actor the Chance to Play Superman
Warner Bros. has a lot riding on its upcoming DC superhero flick The Flash, which finally hits theaters next month. So perhaps in an effort to distract audiences from the long list of allegations and legal issues plaguing the film's lead Ezra Miller, director Andy Muschietti just spoiled a huge surprise cameo.
We already knew that both Michael Keaton and Ben Affleck were set to reprise their roles as Batman from their respective Tim Burton and Zack Snyder helmed franchises, as the plot involves Miller's titular character traveling across the multiverse.
But the latest cameo is from a would-be DC star. Nicolas Cage, who was notoriously cast at the lead in Superman Lives, which was scrapped by Warner Bros. in 1998 after nearly two years of development hell, is finally getting his shot at playing Superman.
"Nic was absolutely wonderful. Although the role was a cameo, he dove into it," Muschietti told Esquire Middle East. “I dreamt all my life to work with him. I hope I can work with him again soon."
"He is a massive Superman fan. A comic book fanatic," Muschietti added of Cage, who famously named his son son Kal-El in reference to Superman’s name on his home planet of Krypton.
Superman Lives was first pitched to producer Jon Peters by Kevin Smith in 1996, who would go on to write the script. Tim Burton, hot off of 1989's Batman and 1992's Batman Returns, was brought on to direct. Affleck, interestingly enough, was initially chosen by Smith to play Superman—though Cage was ultimately given the part with plans to "re-conceive the character."
After spending $30 million on developing the film, however, Warner Bros. eventually abandoned the project, as Burton cited creative differences with Peters and the studio. 25 years later, the lore of Superman Lives remains strong, and even inspired a 2015 documentary called The Death of "Superman Lives": What Happened?
"It was more of a 1980s Superman with like, the samurai black long hair," Cage recently told Variety on his vision for Superman. "I thought it was gonna be a really different, sort of emo Superman, but we never got there."
Cage undoubtedly would brought a little je ne sais quoi to the role, and now—for better or worse—he's finally been given his chance.