Why Did The Flash Movie Feature Nicholas Cage As Superman Fighting A Giant Spider?
Superman Lives is one of the most infamous unproduced projects in Hollywood history. With several successful Batman films in the 1990s, producer Jon Peters (who produced the Batman movies directed by Tim Burton) was tasked with bringing the Man of Steel back to the big screen. The film was set to be loosely based on the Death of Superman storyline from the comics — a massive success at the time.
Kevin Smith was hired to write a screenplay in 1996, which he titled Superman Lives. Smith and Peters immediately came to creative blows over the project, which would have had Nicolas Cage playing Superman. Chief among Peters’ suggestions was his belief that Superman should fight a giant spider in the third act.
Smith tried to play ball. He honored Peters’ request, but also followed studio orders to not call the monster a “spider.” Smith snuck the creature in as a “Thanagarian Snare Beast,” in a reference to the alien home world of Hawkman. However, Smith spoke mockingly of Peters’ idea in later years. He complained Peters also didn’t want Superman to fly, or to wear his famous red and blue costume.
Why Kevin Smith Changed His Tune On The Giant Spider-Fight
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Smith described how he’d been informed about the sequence sneaking its way into The Flash. Smith said he almost passed out at the news, describing it as “mind-melting.”
Smith admitted his error once he saw the scene at The Flash’s world premiere. The director conceded Peters’ idea “would have worked” and “looked badass.” Smith added that while he and Peters couldn’t be more different, he felt they were both “two people that are incredibly satisfied by seeing that moment…”