J.J. Abrams Tells How His Old 'Superman' Script Compares to 'Man of Steel'

Greg Gilman
The Wrap
J.J. Abrams Tells How His Old 'Superman' Script Compares to 'Man of Steel'

A long time ago, in a decade not so far away, J.J. Abrams wrote a screenplay called "Superman: Flyby." Although Warner Bros. never produced it -- settling for 2006's "Superman Returns" instead -- the "Star Wars" director says Zack Snyder's "Man of Steel" may have a major component in common with "Flyby."

In an interview with Empire, Abrams said his adaptation of the classic comic-book character revolved around a "fascinating psychological profile" of Clark Kent.

Before becoming Superman, Kent had to come to terms with the potentially destructive power he was capable of.

Also read: Nicolas Cage as Superman? Behold the Man of Steel That Never Was! (Photos)

"The thing that I tried to emphasize in the story was that if the Kents found this boy, Kal-El, who had the power that he did, he would have most likely killed them both in short order," Abrams said.

"And the idea that these parents would see -- if they were lucky to survive long enough -- that they had to immediately begin teaching this kid to limit himself and to not be so fast, not be so strong, not be so powerful. The result of that, psychologically, would be fear of oneself, self-doubt and being ashamed of what you were capable of."

"Extrapolating that to adulthood became a fascinating psychological profile of someone who was not pretending to be Clark Kent, but who was Clark Kent, who had become that kind of a character who is not able or willing to accept who he was and what his destiny was," he continued. "The idea in the movie was that he became Superman because he realized he had to finally own his strength and what he'd always been."

While Abrams admits he hasn't seen Snyder's "Man of Steel" yet, he's sensing some sort of similar approach.

"I don't know if that's what Zack and Chris [Nolan] are doing, but it looks like that's part of the idea," the filmmaker concluded. "I could not be more thrilled to see that movie. That to me was always the way to go."

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