Look! Up in the sky! It’s a three-hour extended cut of Richard Donner‘s 1978 classic Superman: The Movie! But what’s it doing up there? Oh, I see now, it’s preparing for its long-awaited home video release later this year. Naturally.
Warner Bros.’ Archive Collection has finally decided to give Superman fans the chance to own this rare, newly-remastered extended edition for themselves, and considering how Henry Cavill’s modern cinematic interpretation of the Man of Steel isn’t exactly cheery, it seems like a great time to bring Christopher Reeves‘ smiling, unabashedly positive take on the superhero back into our lives.
io9 points out that this is the first time the three-hour cut, which stands at 188 minutes (nearly 40 minutes longer than the theatrical version), will be officially available since it aired as a two-night television event on ABC back in 1982. Here’s part of the description from Warner Archive’s Facebook announcement:
Unseen in decades, this version is paired here with Richard Donner’s definitive vision of his film, the Special Edition Director’s Cut (2000), to create a supersized celebration of Metropolis’ favorite son that preserves the director’s intent while feeding superfan demands.
So in addition to the three-hour TV cut, we’re also getting Donner’s preferred director’s cut of the movie, which serves as a nice lead-in to the Richard Donner cut of Superman II that came out back in 2006. There are also a handful of pre-existing special features that will be on that Special Edition disc, including:
Commentary by Director Richard Donner and Creative Consultant Tom Mankiewicz
3 Documentaries: Taking Flight: The Development of Superman, Making Superman: Filming the Legend, and The Magic Behind the Cape
Screen Tests for Superman and Lois Lane
Additional Music Cues
Here’s what the new Blu-ray cover will look like:
When the 188-minute version of Superman: The Movie debuted on TV, it included tons of never-before-seen footage; since then, much of that has made its way onto subsequent releases of the movie in the form of deleted scenes.
We don’t know exactly when this new home video release will be made available to the public, but io9 says it’s supposed to be sometime this year. Seems like a cool potential Christmas present for the Superman uber-fan in your life.