While it seems like quite a long time ago at this point – pop culture moves fast after all – it was only this past March that the world bore witness to Zack Snyder’s DCEU epic Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. Largely disliked by critics but mostly enjoyed by audiences, BVS cleaned up at the box office, hauling in $873 million worldwide on a budget of $250 million. This summer’s DCEU follow-up, Suicide Squad, followed a similar pattern of critical derision followed by fan approval.
Of course, Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill are far from the first actors to embody the iconic characters of Batman and Superman on the big-screen, and Snyder was hardly the first director to consider putting together a crossover film featuring both heroes. Naturally, that begs the question of what a Batman V Superman movie made in a previous generation might have looked like. A previously created fan trailer attempted to offer a look at what might have happened if Michael Keaton’s Caped Crusader had collided with Christopher Reeve’s Man of Steel, and now a new fan trailer moves the heroic battle a little further up the Hollywood timeline.
Created by Youtube user Stryder HD – the same person behind the aforementioned Keaton vs Reeve fan trailer – the simply titled Batman v Superman: The Lost Cut Trailer takes a crack at visualizing a battle between Christian Bale’s Batman from Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy and Brandon Routh’s Superman from Bryan Singer’s 2006 sequel Superman Returns.
For those curious, Wonder Woman also makes an appearance, although it’s obviously not the Gal Gadot version. Kevin Spacey’s Lex Luthor is retained from Returns as well. Another interesting element introduced near the end of the trailer is what appears to be Henry Cavill’s Superman as Routh’s evil bizarro world equivalent. With no Doomsday expy present in the trailer, one assumes that sinister Supes would serve a similar function in this hypothetical plot, with his dangerous presence forcing Bale and Routh to unite for a common purpose.
If the story ended the same way though, and Superman didn’t survive, one wonders who this Batman and Wonder Woman would have recruited for their Justice League. John Wesley Shipp’s Flash? Justin Hartley’s Aquaman? Sadly, that’s one area where the options would definitely be limited, at least in the era prior to the current age of superheroes dominating the film landscape.
Suicide Squad is now playing in theaters. Wonder Woman opens in theaters on June 2, 2017, followed by Justice League on November 17, 2017; Aquaman on July 27, 2018; an untitled DC Film on October 5, 2018; Shazam on April 5, 2019; Justice League 2 on June 14, 2019; an untitled DC film on November 1, 2019; Cyborg on April 3, 2020; and Green Lantern Corps on July 24, 2020. The Flash, The Batman solo movie, Dark Universe and Man of Steel 2 are currently without a release dates.