Warner Bros. Pictures is already planning the next installments to Batman Begins and Superman Returns, with respective helmers Christopher Nolan and Bryan Singer in line to return, reports Variety.
While neither director's deal is closed, the studio has hired Jonathan Nolan -- Christopher's brother -- to write the screenplay for the untitled "Batman" project. The studio has options on "Begins" star Christian Bale and "Returns" star Brandon Routh.
Next installment in the Caped Crusader franchise is further along in the process since "Begins" was released last summer; Singer's "Returns," now in post-production, doesn't get released until June 30. "Batman" and "Superman" sequels could make their debut in 2008 and 2009, respectively.
Legendary Pictures, which put up half the financing for both "Begins" and "Returns," is expected to board the sequels and split the budgets 50/50 with Warner Bros. In return, Legendary would split all profits, also 50/50.
One idea being tossed about is for Singer to direct a "Superman" sequel soon after he finishes with Warner's remake of sci-fi thriller Logan's Run, which he's also expected to direct.
The trade says Logan's Run is tentatively scheduled to begin shooting this fall in Vancouver. If Singer did pact to direct the "Superman" sequel, that film could be shot in Vancouver as well.
Singer is also set to direct The Mayor of Castro Street, which is in development at Warner Bros.
"Begins" co-writers David Goyer and Christopher Nolan wrote a treatment for the sequel.
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