Supergirl is a CW television series based on the DC Comics character, Supergirl. The series is executive produced by Greg Berlanti, Ali Adler and Sarah Schechter. It began airing on CBS on October 26, 2015.
Backstage of the Series Edit
By September 2014, Warner Bros. Television was looking to create a television series centered around Supergirl. Executive producers for the series include Greg Berlanti (also a creator/producer for Arrow and The Flash), Ali Adler, who are both writing the script, and Berlanti Productions' Sarah Schechter. DC Comics' Geoff Johns is also expected to be part of the project. Titles under consideration for the series included Super and Girl. Berlanti confirmed the show shortly after, and stated it was in development and had yet to be pitched to networks. On September 20, it was announced that CBS had landed Supergirl with a series commitment, with an expected premiere in 2015 of the 2015–16 television season. In January 2015, CBS Entertainment Chairman Nina Tassler revealed the show would be a procedural, saying, "There will be [crime] cases, but what [executive producers] Ali Adler and Greg Berlanti pitched was a real series arc for her. The beauty of it is now with shows like The Good Wife and Madam Secretary, you can have serialized story elements woven into a case of the week. She's a crime solver, so she's going to have to solve a crime."
In January 2015, it was announced by The Hollywood Reporter that Melissa Benoist would star as Supergirl. Benoist later revealed that auditioning for the part "was a long, drawn-out, three-month process"; she was the first actress looked at for the role, although Claire Holtand Gemma Atkinson were also considered.] In March 2015, Blake Neely, composer for Arrow and The Flash, revealed he would be composing for Supergirl. The show was officially picked up to series on May 6, 2015. It was originally set to premiere in November 2015, before being moved up to October 26, 2015. The pilot episode was screened at San Diego Comic-Con International 2015 on July 8 and 11, 2015. In July 2015, Adler spoke on how much influence Superman would have on the show, saying, "Our prototype is the way the president is seen on Veep. It's certainly [inspired by] so much of what Julia Louis-Dreyfus' character goes through. Ultimately, this is a show about Supergirl and we really want to see it through her lens." On November 30, 2015, CBS ordered an additional seven episodes of Supergirl, for a full season of 20 episodes.
On May 12, 2016, Warner Bros. Television announced that the series had been renewed for a second season of 22 episodes and would move to The CW. The season debuted in October 2016. With the move of the production to Vancouver, it was unclear if Calista Flockhart would remain with the series, as her original contract stipulated that she work near her home in Los Angeles. The CW president Mark Pedowitz said Flockhart wanted to remain with the series and that "We're in ongoing discussions... we're happy to have her in [in whatever capacity] works out." Flockhart ultimately reached a deal to be recurring in the second season, with the production flying her to Vancouver every few weeks to film material.
On January 8, 2017, The CW renewed the series for a third season which debuted on October 9, 2017 The third season saw Jessica Queller and Robert Rovner become the series' executive producers and co-showrunners along with Kreisberg, following Adler's departure; Adler will remain an executive consultant for the series. Both Queller and Rovner joined Supergirl midway through the first season as co-executive producer and consulting producer, respectively, with Rovner promoted to executive producer ahead of the second season.
Supergirl's design was intended to be a modern take on the classic look of the character.
The costume for Supergirl was created by Colleen Atwood, who also designed the costumes for Arrow and The Flash. Benoist stated that she is aware of the costume worn by Kara in more modern depictions of in the comics, and expressed that the "micro-mini hemline" of the skirt in the version created by Michael Turner could be "a little daunting ... but that's good. I like being pushed." Promotional photos of Benoist wearing Atwood's design were released on March 6, 2015. Atwood indicated that she wanted to "embrace the past ... but more importantly, thrust her into the street-style action hero of today." Atwood later revealed details about the costume such as the cape being fastened to an undersuit so as not to pull the costume and that the fabric used was Eurojersey. The reveal of the Martian Manhunter costume in "Human For a Day" was created through visual effects, though a physical version was created to appear in later episodes, with it proving to be one of the most challenging costumes for the costume team.
Reception of the Supergirl costume upon its reveal was mixed. Entertainment Weekly's Natalie Abrams commented that the new look of the costume looks and feels different in a good way. The new costume avoids exposing the character's midriff, as it does in the Michael Turner version of the costume from the comics, as well as having Benoist wear stockings underneath the skirt with over-the-knee boots. Abrams compared the texture of the costume to that worn by Henry Cavill as Superman in Man of Steel, as well as the positioning of the cape on the suit, and the decision to do away with the bright blue and red color scheme. Andrew Dyce, from Screen Rant, found the new costume to perfectly balance itself between classic nostalgia and modernism. The Washington Post noted that Atwood's design was successful, praising her ability to take "cartoon-y tints" and moving them to darker tones.
E! Online was less impressed with the design, negatively comparing it to a "cheap Halloween costume", with washed out colors, and not buying into the "gritty, 'street style'" look Atwood was intending. TV Guide questioned Atwood's design, and noted that although the promotional image has Benoist trying to appear as a powerful hero, the thigh-high boots and pleated skirt comes across as a "model advertising a moderately-priced Halloween costume".
In February 2015, it was announced that Andrew Kreisberg, co-creator of Arrow and The Flash, had joined the series as a writer and executive producer; and Arrow / The Flash and Smallville alum Glen Winter was announced to be directing the pilot. Principal photography for the pilot took place from March 4 to March 29, 2015. Filming locations included the Warner Bros. lot, where Lois and Clark was shot. Each episode cost approximately $3 million to broadcast, which is one of the highest license fees ever for a first year show.
The second season was filmed in Vancouver, rather than Los Angeles where the first season was shot. This was done to reduce the high production costs of the series, one of the issues that made CBS wary to renew the series on their network. Filming for the third season began in Vancouver on July 6, 2017, and is expected to continue until April 24, 2018.
Kara Zor-El, Superman's (Kal-El) cousin who, after 12 years of keeping her powers a secret on Earth, decides to finally embrace her superhuman abilities and be the hero she was always meant to be. Twelve-year-old Kara escaped the doomed planet Krypton with her parents' help at the same time as the infant Kal-El. Protected and raised on Earth by her foster family, the Danvers, Kara grew up in the shadow of her foster sister, Alex, and learned to conceal the phenomenal powers she shares with her famous cousin in order to keep her identity a secret. Years later at 24, Kara lives in National City assisting media mogul and fierce taskmaster Cat Grant, who just hired the Daily Planet’s former photographer, James Olsen, as her new art director. However, Kara's days of keeping her talents a secret are over when Hank Henshaw, head of a super-secret agency where her sister also works, enlists her to help them protect the citizens of National City from sinister threats. Though Kara will need to find a way to manage her newfound empowerment with her very human relationships, her heart soars as she takes to the skies as Supergirl to fight crime.
- Critics Choice Television Awards
- Most Exciting New Series (2015)
- People's Choice Awards, USA
- Favorite New TV Drama (2016)
- Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, USA - Saturn Award
- Best Superhero Adaptation Television Series (2017)
- Best Actress on Television - Melissa Benoist (2017)