The last few days have seen the web all aflutter with pre-vacation Superman buzz, as a few casting rumors, plot details, and production techniques have supposedly “leaked.” None of them are particularly substantial or interesting on their own, but odds are that at least one of them reflects reality in some way.

I’ll sum it up quickly for you…

• Matthew Goode is rumored as a Clark Kent contender.

• Anne Hathaway is rumored as a Lois Lane contender.

• 100% CGI suit approach, a la Green Lantern is supposedly being considered.

“When he is compelled to use his secret powers to intervene in a crisis in West Africa, Clark returns to Smallville to learn more about his origins and the hero he was born to be” …the supposed plot summary.

The two casting rumors come from different sources, with the Anne Hathaway bit originating in a throwaway mention at the end of a plot summary break at What’s Playing. The piece claims that the film will focus on Clark Kent and his attempts to do good around the globe simply as Clark Kent before using his powers.

The Matthew Goode and CGI suit rumors originate from MovieNewz, which claims Snyder is looking at the Watchmen star as a possible Clark Kent, and that the production may resort to a fully CGI Superman for the action sequences.

Casting rumors come and go, and they can come from anywhere or be based on anything, so who knows how much these two particular names reflect the reality of Nolan, Snyder or the studio’s intentions. The CGI suit is a natural rumor to see emerge after the debut of Green Lanterns‘ all CGI approach, though nothing about that rings true for a Nolan-led production. Hell, that doesn’t even feel like something Snyder would endorse. There’s a reasonable, logical answer to why the Lantern suit makes sense as a CGI creation, but those same justifications don’t apply to this Superman film, especially when it’s on the clock because of rights issues. It’s not beyond the realm of possibility, but it would be genuine surprise. All that said, Superman was a CGI composite in the vast majority of the action scenes in Superman Returns, so there comes a point where the difference between a CGI suit and a practical suit is splitting hairs, or applies to a handful of shots/scenes. I imagine there will be a practical suit, but the lines blur more with each new action film.

Finally comes the plot details, which are sketchy at best. The Africa bits reek of the Superman: Birthright comic series, so if Nolan and Goyer pitched an adaptation of that story to the studios then it may very well be spot-on. That wouldn’t exactly jibe with all of the talk of Goyer’s brilliant idea that inspired Nolan to pitch the package to Warner Brothers, but who knows what’s gotten integrated into the apparently rushed script. Even then, perhaps the story was always close to Birthright, and it was the tone and presentation of Goyer’s approach that Nolan latched onto.

So there you go! When your in-laws or cousins or siblings (the younger ones that care anyway) start dropping the “oh yeah, I heard they’re doing X with Superman…” you’ll be able to give them the real skinny. You can do so right after you kill those Eddie Murphy as the Riddler ideas from last year.

(via /Film, MTV, i09, and some casting agent’s ass)