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Superman is going to return -- with Batman

by The Associated Press on July 22, 2013 10:50 AM

SAN DIEGO — Superman is coming back, and he’ll have a caped co-star.

“Man of Steel” director Zack Snyder made a surprise appearance at Comic-Con on Saturday to announce he is making another Superman film and it will include Batman — the first time the two superheroes will be united on the big screen.

He declined to reveal many details, saying the script is just being written.

He then invited an actor onstage to read a passage to hint at the storyline.

“I am the man who beat you,” read Harry Lennox, before an image of the Superman logo, backed by the Batman symbol, flashed on the screen.

Warner Bros. confirmed the first-ever pairing in a statement.

Snyder reimagined Superman in his June blockbuster “Man of Steel,” starring Henry Cavill and Amy Adams. The film has grossed more than $630 million worldwide.

Cavill and Adams will appear in the sequel, Warner Bros. said.

Reaction to the news stunned Twitter and left fans at Comic-Con giddy.

“Personally, I love him,” said Claudia Gomez, who was wearing a Batman T-shirt while her niece, Ana, wore a Superman shirt.

Gomez, who traveled to Comic-Con from Mexico City, said the pairing of both heroes left her optimistic about a new Superman film.

Benjamin Ha, who dressed as Superman to his wife’s Wonder Woman, said bringing the two superheroes together will yield fireworks.

“They’re both alpha males,” he said.

Saturday’s announcement about the film follows DC Entertainment’s debut last month of the Greg Pak-written Batman/Superman comic, an ongoing monthly series illustrated by Jae Lee that was the top-selling title among comic books in June.

The book pairs the two characters together at a time in their lives when they’re both young and still adapting to being superheroes.

Superman and Batman have also been at odds in comic books, too. In Frank Miller’s dark telling of The Dark Knight Returns, a four-issue mini-series from the 1980s, Batman came out of retirement while Superman became a tool of the federal government.

Production on the Superman sequel is set to begin next year. The film is expected to be released in the summer of 2015.

o o o

SAN DIEGO — The question of who the next Doctor Who is remains a mystery, for now.

But fans of Matt Smith and his predecessor will be ecstatic once official footage of the 50th anniversary special airs because both doctors are in it, sharing many scenes, lines and scenery, too.

Steve Moffat, Doctor Who’s showrunner, touted the footage — so far shown only Sunday at Comic-Con International — but asked the crowd to not share it on social media or else “there will be no more Comic-Con exclusives from ‘Doctor Who’ or ‘Sherlock.’”

He said that recordings of the “Sherlock” preview were posted onto Tumblr with minutes of airing.

“Can you promise, as 6,000 of my Comic-Con friends, to do this?” he asked before the lights dimmed ahead of the preview. The special is due in November. The crowd in Hall H was not disappointed in what it saw from the BBC America show.

It boasted lots of scenes between Smith, whose tenure as the Doctor ends in the special, and his predecessor David Tennant.

Also featured was Billie Piper, who played Rose Tyler, the companion to Tennant’s 10th doctor and, before that, Chris Ecclestone’s ninth doctor. There were scant details as to the plot, but the crowd was rapturous.

“There are lots of things that we have been setting for the 50th in Matt’s final episode,” Moffat said. Asked by a fan if Capt. Jack Harkness, who was played by John Barrowman, would return, Moffat demurred.

“Well, you can’t put everybody in the 50th!” he said, drawing laughs.

“If we have a great idea for Captain Jack, he will come back,” Moffat said.

When asked by moderator Craig Ferguson whether Smith’s replacement had been selected, Moffat said, “We haven’t done that yet.”

Moffat noted that finding the right actor would be hard, paying respect to Smith’s work in the role and the odd nature of the character, too.

“He’s the same man. Each actor that plays it comes with a different emotional background,” Moffat said of the regenerating Time Lord whose incarnations since the show began in 1963 have counted 11 actors. “There is only one doctor. He has lots of different faces.”

For Smith, the panel was a chance to reminisce and bask in adulation from a crowd that has made his doctor their own.

“It changed everything: My life, my family’s life,” he recalled of the role. “I’m proud and grateful to be part of it. ... Also, because I am on the way out, I just wanted to say ‘Thank you, for all your support.’”

o o o

PROVINCETOWN, Mass. — The Coast Guard says singer Kelly Rowland was among the passengers on a private boat escorted back to Cape Cod after the captain became disoriented.

Lt. Ruairi White told the Cape Cod Times that the boat’s captain was following a commercial whale-watching vessel Friday, lost sight of the boat and became disoriented north of Provincetown.

The Coast Guard directed a commercial towboat operator to escort the private vessel back to Provincetown.

The towboat U.S. Provincetown said on its Facebook page that the boat was 33 miles north of Provincetown. It said the passengers “were great. Just a little shook up.”

Rowland is a founding member of Destiny’s Child, where Beyonce got her start. The group briefly reunited this year when Rowland and Michelle Williams joined Beyonce for a Super Bowl performance.

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