The 1978 movie 'Superman' "truly captured the essence of the legend of Superman, one of the most enduring and interesting folk heroes of modern time. It’s a story that encompasses mysticism, joy, tragedy, and eternal hope," Tom Nunez of 'The Michigan Daily' observed. 

In the 1980 sequel, 'The Adventure Continues', the trio of Kryptonian terrorists dressed in black exiled from the planet Krypton by Superman's father, Jor-El escaped from their one-dimensional prison Phantom Zone. Freed - courtesy of a hydrogen bomb - those baddies, spearheaded by General Zod and followed by Ursa and Non, set out to colonize the civilized world. On planet Earth, the Kryptonians shared the same powers.

Terence Stamp played General Zod, "Throughout my career, I have played the extremes of good and evil. My first role after Billy Budd (in 1962) was a very young, very bad hoodlum in 'Term of Trial' (also in 1962). And I’ve been alternating between heroes and villains ever since. The role (in 'Superman') was not a simple one, since Zod’s powers were not actual, physical qualities that I could summon. 

"I thought about all the vainglorious men of history, from Alexander the Great onward. I've also seen documentaries about Hitler. It seemed to me that Zod was so powerful that he never had to show his power. He was passive, not entirely engaged in the events surrounding him, but able to act swiftly and mercilessly when he felt it was necessary." 

Sarah Douglas played Ursa, "Before 'Superman' I worked in England in movies, TV and theater playing nice girls who were a little bit naughty. I was best known for comedy and I’d give anything to get back to playing a nice little comedic role. But I’m afraid the only place they do my sort of comedy these days (in 1986) is on television. 

"So for the time being I’m afraid I’ve cornered the market on female heavies, and it’s a difficult typecasting to escape. To play a wicked woman an actress has to create an attitude within herself, then be properly made up. I’m 5-foot-9, but I wear very high heels for my roles that make me photograph as if I were 6-foot-3. I also let my long, dark locks hang down to my shoulders." 

Non was played by the former heavyweight boxer Jack O’Halloran. Since 1966, Jack had competed in 57 fights before he retired from the ring in 1974 with a record of 34 wins, 21 losses and 2 draws. Jack suffered from the disease acromegaly. He told 'United Press International' in 1987, "It’s a very rare disease that mostly enlarges bones in the head and face. Few people can be cured. 

"It gave me massive pads above my eyes, an undershot jaw and it gave my face the appearance of being square and blocky. My hands and feet also grew to huge proportions. The disease struck me when I was in my 20s and I began to notice it after about 50 fights. It really altered my appearance. It caused disorientation and depression. It can be a killer. 

"My problem was caused by a tumor in my pituitary gland and in 1974 I had it removed by laser beam. I only had 2 more fights after that. I underwent another operation in 1985 that prevented the disease from progressing. It took 6 years of intense medical attention for me to overcome the disease. I’ve taken the right medications and now (in 1987) my face, hands and feet are back pretty much to normal." 

In the 1978 'Superman' movie, Terence recalled, "I was on the screen for only a few moments but it was planned that way. The original idea was to shoot both films ('Superman' and the sequel) at the same time. The budget for both started out at $8 million. After they had spent $30 million, they decided it would be better to stop and finish 'Superman II' later." 

For the first 6 months of filming 'Superman', Terence worked with director Richard Donner. For the next 4 months, he worked with director Richard Lester. Terence remembered, "When we came back, the story had changed and we had a new director, so much of the material had to be re-filmed." Ron Legro made the comment, "In the original film, director Richard Donner had to tell a complete origin, as well as introduce the Kryptonian villains.

"Donner coped by, in effect, making 3 movies (about Superman, Lex Luthor and the other Kryptonians) and linking them stylistically. The result was a witty adventure film with a sense of nobility. In 'Superman II' director Richard Lester passes up Donner's lingering eye and pushes his film along at a frenetic pace. This film has no epic pretensions. Still, Lester manages to fit in character development and numerous bits of business."

Terence made known, "The flying part is difficult and painful. You can be padded or cushioned with foam rubber, but your body weight is still suspended by wires. Once you're hanging, you're in pain. There's no way to avoid it. It's not unlike going to the dentist, where you take a chance about experiencing pain." Hanging 13 meters on top the ceiling at Pinewood Studio pretending to "fly", Sarah described the experience, "When I had a nose streaming with a cold, a stage hand used to pass up a tissue to me on a stick." She also told Christine Hogan in 1984, "I was around actors all my life. My mother massaged their feet. Really. She was and still is a physiotherapist, and she took care of actors when they had aches and pains. I was bounced on the knees of many a star I later acted with."

"I love playing Superman, who wouldn't?" Christopher Reeve told Gene Siskel of the 'Chicago Tribune'. "But I like Clark better. Sure, he’s fumbling, bumbling and inept. But everyone identifies with him. There's something about the story that makes it a hit in any culture. It has a classic myth that's very appealing – the story of a guy who is a jerk one minute and can save the world the next."

Pierre Spengler defended Marlon Brando's salary, "We paid Marlon $2.7 million against 11.3% of the first film's profits (grossed $250 million around the world by 1981)." Ilya Salkind added, "He worked only 2 weeks but he was not overpaid. He was the first to give credibility to the project. The others responsible for the success of the films are the Newmans (Leslie and Robert). Mario Puzo gave the project its weight, but the Newmans came up with the story and the dialog." Robert recounted, "We always saw the story as a piece of Americana. That's why we choose the locations we did – the wheat fields of Kansas, the Hoover Dam. In part II virtually every location is a postcard setting – the Eiffel Tower, New York City, Niagara Falls."

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