Bryan Singer / Bad Hat Harry / Warner Brothers


Bryan Singer wanted to get into the film quickly, so despite the large number of credits, the pacing of this main title sequence is brisk, as we follow Superman’s flight from Krypton to Earth, ending with a crash into the state of Florida. We wanted to acknowledge Richard Donner’s original Superman opening credits sequence done at R/Greenberg Associates, and be inspired by it’s signature streaking type. Having access to animation technology not available in 1978, allowed for the creation of unique flight paths for each credit and the movement of the flying credits to be less repetitive than the original. We also integrated 3D animations of planets, meteor showers and star fields.


Main Title


"After an opening credits sequence devoted to an explosive illustration of the tremendous energy forces in deepest outer space, screenplay by Michael Dougherty and Dan Harris (X2: X-Men United) returns Superman, briefly, to the farm where he was raised (memory flashbacks neatly recall his learning to fly) after a five-year absence."

− Todd McCarthy, Variety

"The opening credits (which harkens back to the original movies) and the John Williams music gave me flashbacks to seeing Superman II for the first Time... at first it felt sort of dated… but then i felt the 7 year old child in me sitting in that seat at the Roxie Movie theater in good Ol' Ottawa Illinois... and I knew I was in for something that was a mix of old and new... watching the opening credits and hearing the JW score made me sit up in my seat, smile, and embrace what i was about to go through. Keeping the opening credits the same as the originals was an excellent idea and i never really thought about its impact until now."


"A bit of nostalgia overwhelmed me when I started watching Superman Returns on DVD. The moment of nostalgia was sparked by the opening credits, the music, the familiar Superman Theme. And I was back in that extremely crowded theater back in 1978."

− The Hungry Hungry Writer blog

"As an iteration of an old myth it works brilliantly and seeing those credits and that music on the big screen again was gut-wrenching."

− Feeling Listless blog

"From the opening credits which was a nice homage to the original 1978 movie ones to an appearance by Marlon Brando from beyond the grave, it was perfect in every way."

− Scam City blog

"The 1978 film Superman had a set of titles to match the film's groundbreaking visual effects. The streaking type was created using an animation stand by R/Greenberg and took months. For the 2006 comeback movie Superman Returns, director Bryan Singer wanted something more modern, but using the same typographical premise. However, Singer needed it created quickly, as he'd already tried and rejected the work of other title designers. Cooper's primary concern was the timescale rather than living up to the work of his mentor Richard Greenberg. ’I wasn't nervous about that," says Cooper. ‘I was nervous about creating three minutes of computer-generated planets in two weeks.’"

− Digital Arts Online

"The opening credits are great and my friend and I were joking about how the original 78' flick had like 30 mins of opening titles. The credits are just like the original. But with a nice twist and not as long. Great opening sequence and effects. It's a journey from Krypton to Earth."


"The theatre goes dark, the WB logo plays, followed by the Legendary Film logo… then the screen goes dark once more. Marlon Brando begins to speak. John Williams’ familiar Superman March blares out of the speakers and all of a sudden, the familiar blue outlined credits float toward the audience then streaks straight at you. Then and only then does it really hit you. You’re about to watch a SUPERMAN movie. Not some dressed up retread of the Superman story – A FUCKING SUPERMAN MOVIE! All of a sudden I was eight years old again. The excitement rose in my gut and 22 years had been shaved off of my life. And that feeling never went away. Not for two and a half hours."


"Just to prove it, the movie opens by once again showing us the explosion of Krypton, and then our POV takes off through the universe, past ringed worlds, novas, planets cracked in half like the second death star... until finally we get to Earth. I really hope this is one of the IMAX 3-D sequences, as it seems made for that. Oh, and here’s the big kicker -- the original John Williams theme and the original credits font come right out at you, literally. This is as close as it gets, on a primal movie-going level, to the STAR WARS opening crawl."

− Luke Y. Thompson,