In honour of the Super-Marketing campaign mounted by Warner Brothers to cash-in on the release of Superman: The Movie in 1978 I’m proud to present some of its highlights adorning my collection decades later –
From the top, artist Jim Dietz interpretations of key scenes collected in a glossy portfolio – even today this set of twelve paintings impresses making a mint set an expensive rarity. The Superman cut-out diorama set is a curiously complex paper model given its intended audience (even the instructions advise to take your time & dream) and although some of its whopping 80 pieces have dated poorly there is still the basis of an incredible kit should it be refined.
The 1979 calendar is the only disappointment of the group as only the giant centrefold (Superman pointing to the sky) can compensate for 12 months worth of grainy images printed on poor quality paper. Tucked away in an a smart but unassuming PVC envelope, the Superman blueprint set is a great insight into the practical effects besides being a visual treat. Here the 15 plates fold out into superb renderings of everything from Luthor’s Lair to the XK101 rocket complete with accompanying notes.
Besides David Michael Petrou’s incredible paperback account of ‘The Making Of Superman’ the remainder of the literary line was dedicated to non-movie specific lowbrow fare such as the ‘Official Superman quiz book’ until DC Comics issued some unmissable contributions of their own.
To be continued…