This Superman fan film is so good that people thought it was an actual game leak

Superman Awakens is a fan-man short film
(Image credit: Antonis Fylladitis)

A fan-made Superman film has escaped containment, and it's so well-done that you'd be forgiven for thinking it a real game leak.

The three and a half-minute short film, entitled Superman Awakens (opens in new tab), was created by brothers Antonis and Stavros Fylladitis using Unreal Engine 5. Unaware of the unofficial nature of the film, DC fans got excited when a clip surfaced on ResetEra (opens in new tab) – and for good reason. Superman Awakens, with its slick animation and sound design, looks like something fresh out of a professional trailer.

"Like how supes looks," one ResetEra user commented. "Classic as f*ck." Another user could already feel their expectations skyrocketing. "Oh man," they said, "Don't give me hope about a Superman game."

It wasn't until another user shared a link to the Unreal Engine subreddit (opens in new tab) that people realised that Superman Awakens wasn't leaked from the desk of some major games studio, but is the handiwork of two incredibly talented fans.

The short film features a voiceover narration from Superman himself (expertly delivered by actor Daniel Zbel) as he wrestles with his internal demons. He chastises himself for not living up to the glory heaped upon him, for letting down those he loves and who loved him. He questions whether the world really needs Superman anymore, before pulling himself together and rising once again.

It's a potentially cheesy premise turned into something wholly un-cheesy, thanks to gritty visuals and carefully considered cinematography. Superman Awakens is as succinct as it is powerful, so it's easy to see why many might have thought it a cinematic trailer for an upcoming game or feature-length animation instead of a fan-made short. 

We can play as the Man of Steel in crossover brawler MultiVersus and battle him against any number of quirky pop culture characters, but Superman Awakens has seemingly awakened a yearning for Clark Kent's own action RPG circa Batman Arkham Knight. We can only hope that Suicide Squad: Kill The Justice League impresses, even if the aim of the game is to murder him.

Elsewhere in the universe of fan-made games about DC heroes, this concept shows how ridiculous an open-world The Flash game would be.

Jasmine Gould-Wilson
Staff Writer, GamesRadar+

Jasmine is a staff writer at GamesRadar+. Raised in Hong Kong and having graduated with an English Literature degree from Queen Mary, University of London in 2017, her passion for entertainment writing has taken her from reviewing underground concerts to blogging about the intersection between horror movies and browser games. Having made the career jump from TV broadcast operations to video games journalism during the pandemic, she cut her teeth as a freelance writer for global publications TheGamer and TechRadar Gaming before accepting a full-time role at GamesRadar+. Whether Jasmine is researching the latest in gaming litigation for a news piece, writing how-to guides for The Sims 4, or extolling the necessity of a Resident Evil: CODE Veronica remake, you'll probably find her listening to metalcore at the same time.