Brendan Fraser may be the voice of Cliff Steel/Robotman in DC Universe's Doom Patrol, a role that had him delivering some of the best lines of the live-action series' first season, but it's not his only brush with superhero status. Long before he was a literal man of steel, he auditioned to play one, going out for the role of Superman in what would, eventually, turn into Superman Returns and while things never quite worked out for Fraser to play the Kryptonian, the audition experience left a big impression on the actor.
Speaking with Yahoo Entertainment, Fraser recalled his Superman audition and explained just how powerful suiting up as the hero really is.
"You feel kind of invincible, [like] 'I can fly," Fraser said. "The cape actually makes you think you have the power of flight even though you know you don't."
Fraser had the opportunity to put on Superman's iconic suit during an audition Superman: Flyby. Written by J.J. Abrams in 2002, Flyby was one of a few Superman films in the 1990s and early 2000s that never quite made it to screen -- such as the almost legendary Superman Lives that saw Nicolas Cage very nearly playing the hero. Flyby was set to be directed by Brett Ratner and in Abrams' script, would have seen a very different take on the Superman story. Instead of the usual setting of a destroyed Krypton and young Kal-El sent to Earth as the "Last Son of Krypton", Flyby would have seen a Kryptonian civil war as the impetus for the future Superman coming to Earth and, later, defending it against his cousin Ty-Zor and other Kryptonians. The film would have been a huge departure, but Fraser recalled he enjoyed the script, even if he had to sit in an office and read it to keep the details secret.
"The script was printed on crimson paper with black ink so it couldn't be photocopied," Fraser said. "I was allowed to sit in an office and read it for an hour. It was like a covert operation."
"It was cool, it was pretty cool. I mean, I didn't get the job. It went away," Fraser said. "Brett Ratner was a bit "woo hoo" in those days, and that's well documented. And that was a script J.J. Abrams wrote but it never got made. And it was freaking Shakespeare in space. It was so cool. It was worlds colliding and, it was really, really cool. But you know, I hear he's done well since then."
Ultimately, that Flyby script never made it to screen and Fraser never got to be the Man of Steel. Ratner left Flyby and, ultimately, Bryan Singer ended up helming the project who pursued his own storyline for the film -- a storyline that became 2006's Brandon Routh-starring Superman Returns. However, even though Fraser didn't get to play Superman on the big screen, he's still glad that he was able to audition for the role.1comments
"I've got that stripe!" Fraser said of his Superman audition. "I did it."
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