The CW’s DC universe is eying another major expansion with Superman & Lois, a present-day drama based on the DC characters, starring Supergirl‘s Tyler Hoechlin and Elizabeth Tulloch as the iconic couple. The hourlong project, now in development, hails from The Flash executive producer Todd Helbing, DC Universe architect Greg Berlanti and Warner Bros. TV, where Helbing and Berlanti are under deals.
Written by Helbing, based on the DC characters created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, Superman & Lois revolves around the world’s most famous Super Hero and comic books’ most famous journalist as they deal with all the stress, pressures and complexities that come with being working parents in today’s society.
Former Flash showrunner Helbing executive produces with Berlanti, Sarah Schechter and Geoff Johns via Berlanti Productions.
With several DC series reaching maturity and the show that launched the CW universe, Arrow, in its final season, the network is stepping up its DC development efforts with two high-profile projects. Superman & Lois joins an Arrow spinoff headlined by the show’s Katherine McNamara, Katie Cassidy and Juliana Harkavy reprising their roles. It is set up as a backdoor pilot that will air as episode from the current eighth and final season of Arrow.
Superman & Lois is being developed as a standalone pilot and will not be introduced as a planted spinoff on one of the existing DC series on the CW. It marks a new stage in the DC franchise evolution on the CW as it features one of the most iconic DC characters, Superman.
Hoechlin has been portraying Clark Kent/Superman on the CW’s Arrowverse series since 2016, primarily on Supergirl. Tulloch was cast as Lois Lane last year when she appeared alongside Hoechlin’s Man of Steel in the 2018 Arrowverse crossover. She has since appeared as Lois Lane on Supergirl, The Flash and Batwoman. Both Hoechlin and Tulloch are set to reprise their roles in the upcoming big Arrowverse crossover event.
Tulloch previously starred as the female lead for six seasons on NBC’s Grimm. Her recent feature credits include Chronic, opposite Tim Roth, which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival.
The Daily Planet tandem of Clark and Lois has been a foundation of the DC Comics mythology since the character got off the ground in the 1938 premiere issue of Action Comics.
Sixty-seven years ago, the intrepid reporters also became the first couple in the history of the superhero genre on the small-screen. Adventures of Superman (1952-1958) was the first television adaptation of any comic book when it arrived on the scene as a first-run syndicated show sponsored by Kellogg’s. George Reeves played the high-flying title hero while Phyllis Coates handled the Lois role in Season 1 but gave way to Noel Neill for Season 2 and the remainder of the run. (Neill, who made a memorable cameo in the 1978 Man of Steel film starring Christopher Reeve, died in 2016 at age 95.)
The newsroom relationship was both revamped and vamped-up for Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, which aired for four seasons (1993-1997) on ABC and starred Teri Hatcher and former New England Patriots player Dean Cain. The series focused on the romantic tension between the two leads, then their courtship and their deepening relationship.
WBTV had previously been working on a Superman prequel series, Metropolis, for DC Universe. The live-action series, from Gotham executive producers John Stephens and Danny Cannon, centers around Lois Lane and supervillain Lex Luthor.