The day after I saw it, I picked up Superman I , which I watched in Yarmouth, starting at midnight one evening. That night, I also watched all the bonus features--three "Making of" documentaries and the screen tests (Stockard Channing as Lois Lane? Egad!).
When I returned from the Cape, I picked up the current version of Superman II that's available. I remember, as a kid, reading that the first two Superman movies had been filmed simultaneously, but I never realized that the original director, Richard Donner, had been fired after Superman I and replaced with another director, who reshot a lot of his material (including scenes with Marlon Brando, who was looking for additional millions before he'd agree to his scenes appearing in the sequel...that's why Kal-El's mother is featured so prominently in the sequel, rather than dear old Dad.)
I remember enjoying the sequel very much, although I was always annoyed with a few things, such as the kiss the wipes away Lois's memory of Superman's identity at the end, and the fact that they never explained how Superman was able to regain his powers after supposedly losing them "permanently" in order to become a mortal and sink his Super-loins into Lois at a never-before-seen "love shack" within the Fortress of Solitude.
Turns out there was a reason for all this. Apparently Donner had filmed an explanation regarding how Supes regains his powers, which featured a Marlon Brando scene. And also, the "kiss of forgetfulness" was a Lester invention. In the original vision, Superman turned back time to restore the world to how it was before the super-villains trashed it, in the process wiping away Lois's memory of what had occurred. When he elected to focus on finishing up Superman I, he borrowed this ending to bring that one to a conclusion, and I think it's unclear how he would have ended Superman II.
Anyway, I was really pleased to discover that Superman II is being reassembled, and a version listing Donner as director, which will essentially be an entirely new version of the film, is bring released in November. Way cool! I even saw a few scenes from thye new cut, which were really cool to look at, especially after staying up until 2:30 last night watching the theatrical version of Superman II. (They're available at http://iesb.net/index.php?option=com_co
For the record, however, I did enjoy the Lester film, all over again. I don't like the fact that Lois smokes like a fiend, and is obsessed with orange juice. That bothers me tremendously, for some reason. And some of the effects are cheesy (Superman throwing a red S at one of the bad guys? The Phantom Zone villains being able to shoot one beams out of their palms?). And the orchestration was merely a pale shadow of the magnificence of the first film's majestic score by John Williams.
Okay, enough of that. I'm done with being a fan boy for today!