Man of Steel may be dark, but not dark enough for "R"

Some time ago, we discussed the possibility of a major superhero film eventually being awarded an R rating.

While an R rated Batman, Superman or Spider-Man could be really intriguing, there is unfortunately no way a major studio would allow it. Kids are a huge part of a superhero audience, and if you leave them out of the equation, you’ll lose big money.

So now Rope of Silicon and Collider tell us that Man of Steel took its trip to the ratings board, and to no one’s surprise, it got a PG-13. These days ratings have to be very specific, and Steel got a PG-13 “for intense sequences of sci-fi violence, action and destruction, and for some language.”

Yes, superhero stories are darker than ever these days, but they can’t get too dark or you’ll lose the family audience. Yet some day you get the feeling someone may try an R-rated superhero flick. Then again, what would make a superhero movie even darker? More intense violence? Nudity? The heroes cursing up a storm? Does a superhero story really need any of that to make it any better?

Right as this news was breaking, yet another Batman rumor hit the web. There’s been speculation there will be another reboot of the Dark Knight in the future, and Cinema Blend reminds us this rumor’s been going around since 2011. Not to mention the ambiguous, open-ended conclusion of The Dark Knight Rises, with Joseph Gordon-Levitt looking at the wonders of the Bat Cave with awe. There were also rumors Gordon-Levitt will take over the cape and the cowl for the upcoming Justice League movie, which has since been denied. 

Now Cinema Blend tells us a Batman reboot could come on the heels of Man of Steel and Justice League in 2017 “at the earliest.” As Blend speculates, the success of Steel will determine how soon we’ll get Justice League flick, as well as a new Batman, if a new Dark Knight is indeed in the works. At the same time, superhero films should still stay hot for at least three to five more years, especially with Avengers 2 coming in 2015, and Man of Steel will absolutely have, at the very least, a huge opening weekend when it’s ready on June 14.