75th Anniversary Superman Logo courtesy of DC Comics
Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment are celebrating the 75th anniversary of one of the most enduring pop culture icons of all time with a new logo and a brand-new animated short. It's all part of an initiative to keep the Last Son of Krypton on our radar for the rest of the year, through various cross-media events and products.
"Warner Bros. is privileged to be home to the global Superman brand, which has had an unparalleled impact on popular culture for 75 years," said Warners CEO Kevin Tsujihara. "We are proud to commemorate this milestone with exciting entertainment across the entire studio and across the globe, ensuring this enduring icon reaches new generations of audiences."
The anniversary logo consists of a blue silhouetted Superman with hair perhaps a bit more tousled than usual, with his "S" symbol in white and "75 YEARS" across his waist and legs. It's a simple yet striking image, bringing both playful grandeur and mystery to the longtime superhero.
The two-minute animated short will be produced by Zack Snyder, the director of next month's highly anticipated Superman reboot, "Man of Steel." Details are being kept under wraps (perhaps in a vault made of lead, as speculated by Heat Vision), but apparently Snyder is envisioning one master shot without any cuts that serves as an homage to the Man of Tomorrow and his many incarnations over the past 75 years, including his first appearance in "Action Comics" #1 (1938), Max Fleischer's cartoons, on-screen portrayals by George Reeves and Christopher Reeve, his many visual interpretations by DC artists and up through Henry Cavill's portrayal in "Man of Steel."
Joining Snyder in the project will be animation veteran Bruce Timm ("Batman: The Animated Series," "Justice League"), "Man of Steel" storyboard artist Jay Oliva, DC's Geoff Johns and Mike Carlin and WB Animation's Peter Girardi. An animatic version of the short, which is being produced in London, Los Angeles and Korea, will be unveiled in July at San Diego Comic-Con before being officially released in the fall.
The Year of Superman actually kicked off earlier this month with the May 7 release of the animated feature "Superman: Unbound," (see above trailer) which puts the Man of Steel against one of his classic enemies, Brainiac, portrayed as a ruthless android bent on capturing and absorbing the collective intellect of alien cultures. Superman will also be featured in "Infinite Crisis," an online multiplayer battle arena game that will debut this fall.
The biggest Superman-related event of the year is, of course, the release of "Man of Steel," which will hit theaters on June 14. After a series of impressive and rousing trailers that tease a film that seems to be both an introspective character study and a rollicking action film, everyone seems to be cautiously optimistic as Zack Snyder attempts to truly bring us a big-screen version of Superman for the 21st century, after Bryan Singer's affectionate though perhaps misguided and ultimately disappointing "Superman Returns" (2006).
All of this should keep Superman flying high through the Christmas season. Next year, it stars all over again as WB and DC celebrate the 75th anniversary of Superman's colleague, Batman.
See how the world's first superhero has transformed over his 75 years...
- Visual Arts
- Zack Snyder