Movie Reviews

James Gunns Best Superhero Movie Trick Makes DCUs Newest Superman Casting Announcements Even More Exciting

Summary

  • James Gunn’s signature tradition of balancing relatable human stories with whimsical superhero antics may provide a refreshing new perspective on Superman.
  • Superman
    ‘s casting announcements hint at a fresh, more personal take on the Man of Steel in James Gunn’s upcoming DC Universe movie.
  • By delving into Superman’s humble beginnings in Smallville and his Clark Kent relationships, Gunn’s Superman promises a grounded counterweight to the movie’s fantastical elements.



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James Gunn’s fresh take on DC’s biggest icon is already evident in Superman‘s casting announcements, which bode well for the DCU’s first live-action release. There’s a lot of pressure on James Gunn’s upcoming Superman reboot. Not only is Superman the first movie in the DCU’s first chapter “Gods and Monsters”, but it’s also the first dive into what James Gunn and Peter Safran’s DC Universe has in store for future movies and shows. Following the DCEU’s premature conclusion, Superman must exceed expectations in order to cement the new franchise as its improved replacement right from the start.


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James Gunn and the team behind Superman have been carefully dropping information about the 2025 DCU movie, keeping major elements like the full Superman suit a secret in order to raise hype. Nevertheless, Superman‘s few behind-the-scenes reveals so far already delineate the film’s new approach to the Man of Steel. Superman‘s new chest logo design, choice of characters, and casting announcements are enough to understand in which direction the DCU’s Superman, and the franchise as a whole, are heading.


James Gunn’s Superhero Movies Work Best Balancing The Relatable With The Surreal

James Gunn Adds Heart To His Superhero Projects By Leaning On Comic-Book Whimsicality


James Gunn’s style is defined by his characters’ cheerful personalities, his colorful visuals, and his penchant for accompanying his heartfelt scripts with soundtracks that are filled to the brim with well-known songs. Despite these trademarks, James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy movies are quite different from The Suicide Squad and Peacemaker, and each of Gunn’s comic book projects stands on its own as a self-contained journey for its characters. For instance, Guardians of the GalaxyVol. 2‘s fatherhood theme is distinct from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3‘s animal liberation theme despite starring the same superhero team.

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Superman’s Fortress of Solitude has one silly element from the comics that James Gunn should include in his Superman movie for an important reason.


James Gunn’s comic book characters are inherently unrealistic — and unapologetically so. Instead of grounding characters like Groot and Harley Quinn, Gunn doubles down on their absurd nature. This opens the narrative, visual, and musical possibilities of their scenes and avoids pointless discussions about the realism level of such scenarios. For example, Baby Groot’s dance during Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2‘s opening sequence and Harley Quinn’s fight scene at the Corto Maltese dungeon make little sense from an outside perspective, but they serve as perfect audiovisual representations of the characters’ personalities and their unique outlook on life.

Superman’s Casting Announcements Prove The DCU Movie Will Continue This Trend

James Gunn’s Superman Isn’t Forgetting The Human Part Of The Man Of Steel’s Story

Superman is bound to be much less fantastical than James Gunn’s previous superhero projects. However, the director’s style will likely be patent in every aspect of the movie. Whereas the DCEU focused on Superman’s larger-than-life superhero persona and his central role in worldwide and intergalactic conflicts, Superman already seems to approach the Man of Steel from a more personal perspective. The inclusion of Jimmy Olsen in the script, for instance, suggests that Superman’s time as Clark Kent won’t just be a facade to hide his superhero identity from the world.


Superman’s world-saving adventures and his intimate Clark Kent story will likely be more equitative than all live-action
Superman
adaptations released to this day.

Clark Kent’s parents have also been cast in James Gunn’s Superman, which seemingly confirms that the DCU movie won’t ignore his humble life at his Kansas farmhouse, or at least won’t skip his formative years with the Kents. Going by James Gunn’s focus on father-son relationships in previous superhero projects, the balance between Superman’s world-saving adventures and his intimate Clark Kent story will likely be more equitable than all live-action Superman adaptations released to this day. Also following James Gunn’s superhero project pattern, Superman‘s fantastical elements may be heightened and thus will likely create a richer balance with its grounded aspects.


DCU’s Superman Movie Promises Set Up A Truly Unique Take On The Man of Steel

Superman’s Lighthearted Nature May Take Center Stage In The DCU

New Superman Logo, Corenswet, and DCU Custom Image
Custom Image by Kevin Erdmann

By delving much deeper into Superman’s humble beginnings in Smallville and his close relationship with Jonathan and Martha Kent at the same time he joins forces with multiple metahumans to save the world, James Gunn’s Superman might offer a fresh perspective on the live-action Man of Steel. A bigger gap between Superman’s fantastical and grounded elements provides the movie with the potential to explore complex themes and relationships that previous DC movies and shows may not have dared to attempt. This in turn could present David Corenswet’s modern Superman portrayal in a more nuanced light.


James Gunn’s proven willingness to embrace the inherently unrealistic nature of the comic book characters he adapts allows for every one of his superhero projects’ narrative, visual, and musical possibilities to flourish — and the DCU’s Superman may not be the exception despite it being more grounded than the Guardians of the Galaxy trilogy and The Suicide Squad. While there’s always the chance that James Gunn’s trademark style oversteps the line and becomes overwhelming, Gunn’s bold directorial style might just be what Superman needed to champion a blooming franchise and reclaim his status as DC’s centerpiece property.

Superman Legacy Comic Cover

Superman (2025)

Release Date
July 11, 2025

Cast
David Corenswet , Rachel Brosnahan , María Gabriela De Faría


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