Robot 6

Max Landis’ pitch for epic death and return of Superman comic


Chronicle screenwriter Max Landis, who last year released a 17-minute video rant about the death and return of Superman (featuring Elijah Wood and Mandy Moore), reveals that earlier this year he was approached by DC Comics to collaborate with Greg Pak on a weekly series that apparently would have rebooted that very storyline. However, because of Landis’ schedule and changes at DC regarding a weekly title, the project never went anywhere.

But now Landis has uploaded a nearly 43-minute video in which he enthusiastically lays out his ideas, act by act. “This is not a viral video,” the prologue cautions. “It is essentially longform fan faction and super dorky to the moon.”




Obnoxious little man. But he’s creative.

Best description of Max Landis?

“He was born on third base…but things he hit a triple”.

Marc Hall can eat an ass

July 23, 2013 at 3:42 pm

Getting tired of this guy.

This is why you don’t get writers whose only exposure to comics starts in the 90s

guys is a moron and a fanboy douche.


Anybody who lays out over 60 minutes total of their basically fan-fic ideas on video suffers a severe overinflated sense of self-importance.

JD got it in one. Would we know who he is if his daddy wasn’t John Landis?

No, we would not. And what is he busy on? He’s not writing Chronicle 2

This guy did the movie Chronicle (which was essentially a rip-off of Akira) and he was severely butt-hurt on Snyder’s Man of Steel Movie (which he also whined about) Why in gods name would ANYONE want to see a comic-book w/ him as the writer??…ESPECIALLY A SUPERMAN COMIC-BOOK!

Ok, so I just watched the whole thing. I can see how people would find Landis very annoying but I actually enjoyed the enthusiasm.

I also loved the story he told. I think he got carried away with the ultra violence (Superman’s jaw almost being ripped off? Aquaman’s eyes gouged out?) but it was an interesting and new take on the storyline.

I would have bought it and I enjoyed those 45 mins more than I enjoyed the 140 or so of Man Of Steel.

I really like the story beats to this. I like the Ennis-style violence of Doomsday maiming people in “interesting ways” much less.

I always find the internet comic nerd reaction to Max Landis interesting. It reminds me of my favorite definition of a**hole: someone exactly like you- only more so.

Man, CBR is just a bunch of haters. :(

Yeah, considering his little video from last time wasn’t correct even half of the time and ended a pretentious line that I’m sure he thought sounded 10 times more profound than what it really was, this looks like a project that would be a huge waste of my time and money. Thank god DC hasn’t gotten back to him.

Not trying to hate on this guy, but He should pitch some ideas to Image and establish himself, and if he’s as good as he thinks, DC will definitely pick him up

( kind of glad Pak is working alone on Action Comics. unless he grabs van lente)

That was amazing. Wow. I was a bit hesitant about sitting through a 40-minute long video of a pitch, but goodness was it worth it. Never realised how the time passed by.

That was a great pitch for the story. The guy has talent. Just like Chronicle, he knows how to make a genuine comic-book story about super-heroes, with all the classic elements of good mainstream american comics; but with such an intelligent approach. And oh did the original story seem so weak in comparison. Never was a fan of braindead-to-be-accesible-and-safe stories; and the death of Superman was every bit such a story; but now I have even less appreciation for it. I don’t know whether to thank Landis or curse him.

I think the story could still be made as a graphic novel. It almost “needs” to be done.

As for his self-importance: do people really have such a lack of sense of humor? The guy is just trying to be entertaining. What did you expect him to do? Show up in a suit sitting behind an office, talking to a single camera with a calm, neutral tone? Is there a fun-sapping disease you can cath from hanging aroung CBR? People should know about such stuff guys; this is serious.

And the same goes to the “he made a lengthy video to just talk about his idea” guys. Yeah. He did. What’s your problem? Did he use your time? People use seemignly countless amounts of time just chatting about things they are interested in. Anything really. Landis does so in front of a camera. Because he likes to do that. I guess he should first get permission from easily-offended-about-what-other-people-do-with-their-free-time individuals. He should definitely release an official statement to apologise at the very least for the harm he has done.


Just enjoy the video guys. Or don’t, if it’s not your cup pof cocoa. No need to insult a person because… I don’t even know: he makes videos?/Chronicle made only 120 million dollars?/he has famous parents?/he looks weird/who the hell drinks whisky with water?!/I don’t agree with your pitch? Really, what is the justification for behaving so poorly over a person presenting his ideas on the internet? Should we DDoS Deviant Art as well? Some of those “art” pieces are just… bleurgh.

Michael Heide

July 23, 2013 at 6:06 pm

There are quite a few solid ideas buried in this. With another draft or two (and help by Greg Pak), this could have been an exciting maxiseries. The way it’s presented here, I do have a lot of problems with it, though.
Spoilers, I guess, but why would you read this comment before watching the video?
1.: It’s all a bit too connected. Mon-El is Zod is the creator of Doomsday and of the Fortress of Solitude. Henshaw is Brainiac. Kinda. Luthor is responsible for bringing Doomsday to Metropolis. The Justice League gets founded over Doomsday attacking Earth. This feels waaaaaay too forced and ties waaaaaay too many characters to this single event.
2.: This clashes with everything we’ve seen so far in the New52, which misses the point of the whole exercise: Making the Death and Return of Superman work within the new continuity. A continuity without Ted Kord or Jonathan Kent. A continuity that already has an origin in place for the Justice League (both vanilla flavored and international), for Brainiac and other elements of Max’ story. A continuity in which Lois didn’t learn Superman’s secret identity four years ago, where Wonder Woman’s lasso is still intact in the present, and where Aquaman wasn’t maimed by Doomsday. A continuity where Mon-El exists in the 31st century, and where he isn’t Zod.
3.: The destroyed Metropolis in the beginning was a strong opening, but showing how it got that way in too great detail can easily slide into disaster porn territory. Max notes how out of place the ultraviolence feels in a Superman story. But he doesn’t conclude that it should be toned down a bit. If this comic was made exactly the way he tells us in the video, it would repeat the same mistakes Infinite Crisis and the Man of Steel movie made. It would focus too much on the destruction and the brutality, and not enough on the courage and the hope that Superman instills in everyone around him.
4.: Kneel before Zod is a tired meme that even Zack Snyder was wise enough not to reference. The guy who had Superman destroy two cities without any thought of the people in them. The guy who snapped the neck of an enemy because he couldn’t figure out a different method of protecting four civilians in a subway station. When even that guy realizes that the whole Kneel before Zod is overplayed, so should you.

If those major problems do get solved, the end result could be an entertaining story. But only then.

“Not trying to hate on this guy, but He should pitch some ideas to Image and establish himself, and if he’s as good as he thinks, DC will definitely pick him up”
Um, did you read the opening of the video? DC had already approached HIM for a project like this. Or so he says.

Max Landis is a Hollywood Kid, one of those second/third generation kids of Hollywood types, his dad is Director John Landis. That’s what that line about him being born on “third base and thinking he hit a triple” comes from. He’s a spoiled rich brat who’s gotten breaks no one else would get simply because his dad has been around forever. (The less I say about John Landis the better.)

Max is obviously some kind of manic or snorting blow, the guy gets on people’s nerves because he’s an antsy manic ostensibly sane motormouth.

He’s a product of Hollywood privilege. It would be best to ignore his mediocre creative endeavors and watch him flame out like so many others like him.

I’m betting on some harebrained scheme to use his coke connections to fund a movie. Or some sort of coke induced episode involving public nudity and that sword.

I really like this video. Overall it’s a pretty interesting story, and I wouldn’t have minded if an altered version of it did get made. I have a few problems with it, though. Not taking into account minor stuff like all hero teams getting formed in the middle of the battle with Doomsday, I mean. First of all, the whole “Superman getting trained in strategy and martial arts by Batman” makes Superman look like a total dumbass who needs to be trained in strategy by Batman, otherwise he’d just fight like an six year-old, just mindlessly flailing about, trying to hit something in front of him. I also personally think that Acts Two and Three aren’t nearly as interesting or cool as Act One. I think the thing that I most enjoyed though was the fact that Superman doesn’t actually dies, and instead Clark just gives up and “kills” him. It sorta plays with the audience’s expectations, plus I think pretty much everyone’s sick of “comic book deaths”, where we all know the dead character’ll be back in a matter of a few months.

Max Landis is a loathsome human being. I listened to his Nerdist interview, and he’s insufferable. He seems to think that repeatedly asserting “I’m an asshole” gets him off the hook for being an asshole. It doesn’t. If you’re aware of the fact that you’re behaving like a jerk, do something to change your behavior. Instead of hanging your hat on the asshole rack, strive to be a decent human being. Arsehead.

Why does this guy raise the ire of so many internet geeks? He’s only doing what comic geeks do every day, except on a larger stage. Me thinketh thou protest too much.

It’s funny that people say he’s only where he is because of his father, as if John Landis’s sole income for the last 20 or so years hasn’t been talking head spots on “I love the 80s” style documentaries and the odd guest spot on shows like Masters of Horror.

Why is everyone so angry at him, what exactly has he done wrong?

They’re angry because he’s successful and it makes them feel better to make up excuses for why he’s successful in order to feel better about why they aren’t.

Meet him in person and they get back to me on why so many people hate him

Eh, who cares what he’s like in person. I’m not looking to marry the guy.

Story sounds badass and I would buy and read it.

Long hair is an unpardonable offense which should be punishable by death. ;)

I know nothing about this guy, but the picture they chose to headline this article is one of the douchiest looking pictures I’ve ever seen.

I thought that story was fucking epic. I would buy that Superman comic all day long and if it actually came out 99% of the haters on here would too.

D-bag or not, that guy has some great ideas for the story.

I have to add that I don’t care much for the ultra-violence either, but I would have gladly paid to read that.

You know, i’ve heard that James Cameron is a total asshole too, but that doesn’t stop Aliens and Terminator from being some of the best science fiction films ever written or filmed.

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