The internet is truly an amazing thing. Without it this DVD would have never seen the light of day -- a true tribute to the steadfast voice of fans. While some reports claim that Margot Kidder said in an interview in 2004 that enough Richard Donner footage existed in a vault somewhere that he could make his own cut of Superman II, others say that rabid fans had asked Warner Bros. for years to release a cut of Superman II that was more faithful to Donner's vision (a fan film version had been circulating online, utilizing footage from the broadcast TV versions of the movie that had footage not in the theatrical release). Whichever version is true, internet fans seized on the concept and began pestering Warners with emails and online petitions, and it finally paid off. Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut was released today on DVD, and is also a part of Warners massive The Ultimate Superman Collection DVD set.

Why all the hubbub over a film that's 28 years old? Well, I'm glad you asked. I'll do my best to give you a capsulized version of the sordid history of Superman II, but for much a much more in-depth explanation of the entire affair, check out the Wikipedia page for the new version of the film. Basically, Richard Donner shot most of the footage for Superman II while filming the original Superman: The Movie because the two films were supposed to be closely related to each other, two halves of one story. This included huge scenes that featured Marlon Brando which were never seen in the released film, all of Gene Hackman and Ned Beatty's scenes, and much more. After going over budget and over schedule on the original Superman film, the Salkinds (the producers on the Superman films) halted production on the sequel so that everyone could focus on completing Superman: the Movie. With me so far? Okay, let's press on ...