Superman Joins Spider-Man at Imageworks

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Sony Pictures Imageworks has been awarded the visual effects contract for Warner Bros.’ upcoming live-action Superman feature. The Culver City, Calif. studio is earning a reputation as the go-to house for superhero flicks, having spent the last few years creating demanding effects shots for Sony Pictures’ hugely successful Spider-Man films. Imageworks beat out ILM, among others, for the contract.

Directed by X-Men helmer Bryan Singer, Superman Returns is scheduled to go before the cameras early next year for release sometime in 2006. Adler, Jon Peters and Singer are producing the pic, with Mark Stetson supervising a reported 800 or so visual shots for Warner Bros.

The news comes just a week after Warner Bros. announced that relative unknown Brandon Routh had been cast as the new Man of Steel, taking over the role previously played on the big screen by the late Christopher Reeve.

Imageworks recently wrapped work on Warner Bros.’ upcoming CG motion-capture extravaganza, The Polar Express. Also on the busy studio’s plate is Columbia Pictures’ upcoming Ghost Rider, with Academy Award-winning effects supervisor Kevin Mack at the wheel.