Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Superman returns, Batman begins, Nobleman natters

Today I went to a Superman/Batman double feature.

feature 1: Superman

Superman: The Movie (1978) was produced by father and son Alexander and Ilya Salkind. Salkind senior passed away in 1997. Ilya currently has a film company named for himself. In 2006, I contacted him while researching, ironically, my Batman/Bill Finger project. (Bill's second wife told me that Bill had been asked to fly to California to take a shot at writing a script for a Superman movie; turns out she was probably thinking of the 1960s Filmation cartoons, at least one of which Bill did write.)

Recently, I contacted the Ilya Salkind Company again, this time to ask what happened to the Siegel and Shuster biopic I saw announced on their site last year but which had since been taken down. Today Ilya's assistant kindly responded and told me that the film is back on the site, though on the back burner in terms of development. I didn't ask why it had been taken down, though I wanted to. It's obviously none of my business.


Moist wipe for hands.

feature 2: Batman

Last Friday, I heard from the congenial producer of a documentary about Bob Kane to be packaged with this summer's animated DVD Batman: Gotham Knight. He'd learned online that I have Bill Finger photos beyond the only two that are continually republished. He wants to give his viewers something they haven't seen before—props for thatand asked if he could use any of the photos I've gathered in the film.

For about half an hour today, we spoke about how we might help each other. In exchange for use of the photos, he offered me screen credit and a spot on their Comic-Con panel (both bat-cool), but I asked for something else instead. We both doubt he'll be able to wrangle it due to the delicate nature of Bill Finger's status at DC, but if so, then you could see at least one of the new Finger photos on the copper screen (or whatever the TV equivalent of "silver screen" is). If not, you'll see them anyway, here and possibly elsewhere.

Also bear in mind that these are technically not my photos. Living people sent them to me on good faith. They've given permission for me to use them for my book (which this blog is an extension of), but for any purpose beyond that, I'd go back to them for clearance.

In the end, though, most of them want what I want: to coax Bill Finger out of the shadows at long last.

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