San Diego Comic-Con 2013
Credit: D.C. Comics

At the conclusion of the Warner Bros/Legendary panel at Comic-Con, Man of Steel director Zack Snyder walked onstage. He thanked everyone for supporting Man of Steel and announced, rather nonchalantly: “It’s official: We’re making another Superman movie.” He insisted that he couldn’t say anything about the film, but explained that he had “pored through the DC Universe to look for a way to tell this thing.” He said there was a single element of the film he could share.

At that point, he called Harry Lennix — who you’ll recall basically played the Nick Fury character in Man of Steel — for a charismatic dramatic reading. (How charismatic? Lennix was wearing an ascot.) He read a key line from Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns:

I want you to remember, Clark. In all the years to come. In all your most private moments. I want you to remember my hand at your throat. I want you to remember the one man who beat you.

That line is, of course, spoken by Batman — and that “Clark” he’s referencing is, of course, Superman. (The quote comes after a lengthy battle between the two heroes.) As Lennix finished speaking, a giant Superman logo appeared on the Hall H screen … and it was superimposed on the Batman logo. So there you go: There is another Superman movie coming, and it will co-star Batman.

No other information about the project was given at the panel, but the announcement is already sending ripples through the geekosphere. Warner Bros. has made it clear that they hope to build a whole connected cinematic universe of films on the foundation of Man of Steel, with loose plans for a Justice League film in the distance. Beginning that process with a Batman/Superman movie — let’s call it World’s Finest for now, shall we? Or maybe Men of Steel? — allows them to unite their two most recognizable character brands into one megamovie. It’s unclear at this point whether Man of Steel producer/Dark Knight director/Superhero-Whisperer Christopher Nolan will be involved, although the film will probably definitively break from the Dark Knight trilogy, with a rebooted Batman origin and a new actor. Who knows? All we have to go on is a logo on top of another logo. Stay tuned for more rumors about The Untitled Batman/Superman Project, appearing several times an hour on the internet for the next two years.