Image from TheManFromKrypton
I've been a comic book fan practically my whole life. And I was always firmly in the DC Comics category. I bought the occasional Spider-Man or Hulk, but the DC Universe was where I liked to play.
This worked out great as a kid, because Shazam!, Isis, and Wonder Woman were on TV, Superman was in the theaters, and the Marvel TV entries like The Incredible Hulk, and The Amazing Spider-Man were on too. Throw in The Bionic Woman and The Six Million Dollar Man, and I was in geek-kid paradise.
But as I grew up, the Superman movie franchise got progressively worse. Batman started strong, and got stranger and stupider. Catwoman is better left un-remarked upon. And outside of a few other rare oddities (Smallville, The Flash for one season on TV, and some lesser-known properties), DC movie and TV tie-ins have been pretty lacking.
Meanwhile, after some spectacular failures, Marvel hit its stride, and started hitting box office gold. The X-Men, Spider-Man, The Fantastic Four, Iron Man--all were successful either critically, financially, or both. To some degree, I liked them all. Even the original Hulk movie. But where are the DC stars?
Batman Begins and The Dark Knight finally put DC on the map for quality (and blockbuster) movie making, but Batman was never a favorite. He--as a non-super powered superhero--never seemed very plausible to me. I know, superheroes plausible? But you get my drift. He had no powers.
Superman Returns was the long-awaited culmination of years of false-starts getting Superman back to the big screen. And I loved it. I thought the continuation of the original series (ignoring parts III and IV) was a good idea, I thought that Brandon Routh was a great choice as the star, and I thought that Kevin Spacey was terrific as Lex Luthor. But for some reason, almost nobody agrees with me.
And so, the follow up is cast into the same development hell as the previous film was. They're talking reboot. They want to start over. But over to what? Superman Returns may have focused too much on the love story, but what exactly do fans want Superman to be? He's the guy in that movie, unless you're looking for something totally removed from comics. Do you really want to go for a "re-imagining" of Superman? Is Nick Cage still available?
I say, follow up the last movie with (at least mostly) the same cast. Just get a good story, a good villain, and a dynamite advertising campaign. Make a good movie, the rest will follow.