Nicholas Cage as Superman?

A test-shot of Nicholas Cage in costume as Superman has leaked thanks to a Japanese Tim Burton fansite. Or, at least that’s what they claim it is.

You may remember that, back in the mid- to late-1990s, both Tim Burton and our old friend Kevin Smith were involved in a proposed relaunch of the Superman movie franchise. And you may also remember that Nic Cage, much to the horror of comic book fans everywhere, was supposedly slated to star. Kevin Smith fans will recall Smith’s diatribe from An Evening With Kevin Smith, wherein he gave his take on the whole debacle. And many people—not me, surprisingly—might even have read Smith’s script for Superman Lives at one point or another. But none of us—not until now, at least—has ever seen visual proof of the horror that was almost unleashed upon the world.

Seriously, this image makes me queasy. It is that terrible. What about you? What do you think?

And, while we’re at it, what would it take to make a good Superman flick? I liked Superman Returns a bit, and I think the first two films of the Christopher Reeve series are pretty good, but there has yet to be a Dark Knight-quality Supes movie. Why is that?