'Man of Steel' trailer: Five mysteries from the new footage explained

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Screen shot 2013-04-17 at 10.16.45 AMMention the possibility of our hero battling with any kind of giant, insect-like legs and it’s sure to inspire dread in those who have followed the various aborted Superman films of yesteryear.

In the most famously dysfunctional proposed Superman project, a late-’90s effort that would have starred Nicolas Cage, with direction by Tim Burton and a script co-written by Kevin Smith, Superman would have pummeled an enormous space spider – for some reason. While most fans are grateful that never came to fruition, the sight of mechanical legs grasping for the hero might rouse long-buried arachnophobia.

But fear not. That’s only General Zod’s command ship — the Black Zero.

We also see it in this image, although it might at first look like Zod and Co. looking out at Metropolis from atop an especially tall building.

Screen shot 2013-04-17 at 10.18.25 AMAnd this is a wider view of the multi-legged ship, using an energy beam to bore down into the city.Screen shot 2013-04-17 at 10.21.14 AM

Although Zod was trapped in the 2-D Phantom Zone in the Richard Donner-directed Superman movies, Michael Shannon’s version of the villain is dispatched aboard this prison ship. Here they are seen shackled and awaiting exile. Not too happy, vowing revenge.

We don’t see their escape, but can safely assume that’s where things are headed.

“It was prison ship that he retrofits, and that’s what he comes to Earth in,” says producer Deborah Snyder.

If it looks somewhat organic rather than high-tech, that was intentional. Production designer Alex McDowell (Fight Club, Watchmen) crafted what she called a kind of “geo-tech” to show they were both scientifically advanced, but also visibly different than the styles on Earth. Less glossy. “We wanted to do something fresh but also felt that it should look like an ancient society,” Deborah Snyder said.

NEXT PAGE: A man riding a giant dragonfly?

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