ScreenCrush’s Comic Strip is a weekly roundup of the hottest superhero movie news items. From Marvel to DC and points in between, if it pertains to costumed comic book heroes, we’re covering it here, bringing you our expert analysis. This week, re-watch the Super Bowl movie trailers for 'Captain America 2,' 'The Amazing Spider-Man 2' and 'Transformers 4'; check out some major 'Batman vs. Superman' casting; and watch Bryan Singer try to clarify the mess that is 'X-Men: Days of Future Past.'

Super Bowl

Haven't you heard the phrase, "Half time is game time"? Well, during Sunday's big game between the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks (the latter taking home the big win), it was actually more like, "commercial time is game time." New spots and extended trailers for 'Captain America 2' and 'The Amazing Spider-Man 2' debuted, along with our first ever footage of 'Transformers 4,' which saw Optimus Prime riding a dinobot. Watch them all below:

'Captain America 2' Extended Super Bowl Trailer

'The Amazing Spider-Man 2' Extended Super Bowl Trailer

'Transformers 4' Super Bowl Trailer

'Batman vs. Superman'


In the biggest casting move of the past week, Warner Bros. announced that Jesse Eisenberg (yes, that Jesse Eisenberg from 'The Social Network' and 'Now You See Me') will portray Lex Luthor in the 'Man of Steel' follow-up, 'Batman vs. Superman' (which is still unofficially titled, by the way). Talk about throwing one from left field. If Ben Affleck's casting as the new Batman didn't throw fans into an uproar, this latest casting sure did. They also announced Jeremy Irons as the new Alfred (played by Michael Caine in the 'Dark Knight' trilogy), but that bit fell into the shadows in light of the larger announcement.

'Batman vs. Superman' will likely be one of the biggest disasters or one of the most interesting comic book movies. While Batfleck never really bothered me, being that the actor has come a long way from his days as 'Daredevil' -- and, frankly, an actor can only do so much with the material he's given -- to become an Oscar-winning director ('Argo'), Eisenberg could offer a unique take on Superman's most iconic nemesis to date. So we'll just have to wait and stay tuned.

Marvel's Road Ahead

Marvel Studios

While we're all getting antsy to see the next 'Captain America' movie in theaters come April 4, Marvel Studios and Disney are laying down the ground work for their upcoming slate of superhero fair. As we'll soon start moving away from the Winter Soldiers and Guardians of the Galaxy of Phase 2 into the still mysterious Phase 3, we will already have 'Thor 3' and 'Captain America 3' to look forward to. While official release dates have yet to be announced, Marvel kick started development on both these projects.

For 'Thor 3,' Christopher Yost, one of the 'Thor 2' writers, and Craig Kyle, Former Senior Vice President of Marvel’s Production and Development, will be penning the script for the third installment. As for 'Captain America 3,' 'Winter Soldier' directors Joe and Anthony Russo so impressed the studio with their work on 'Captain America 2' that they've been brought back as directors for the next one.

So far, here's Marvel's current release slate for the coming movies:

'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' -- April 4, 2014
'Guardians of the Galaxy' -- August 1, 2014
'The Avengers: Age of Ultron' -- May 1, 2015
'Ant-Man' -- July 17, 2015
TBD -- May 6, 2016
TBD -- July 8, 2016
TBD -- May 5, 2017

While it's unconfirmed, my guess is that 'The Avengers 3,' which has been announced, will take the 2017 release spot, while the other two could be for either 'Thor 3' or 'Captain America 3,' or even 'Doctor Strange' or 'Black Panther,' which we know Marvel is working on developing.

In the meantime, check out these new posters and images from the closest coming Marvel movie, 'Captain America 2':

Marvel Studios
Marvel Studios
Marvel Studios
Marvel Studios

Cleaning Up the 'X-Men'

Fox via Empire

Last week, Bryan Singer and the cast of his 'X-Men: Days of Future Past' helped release 25 Empire magazine covers featuring new images and first looks from the sequel to 'X-Men: First Class.' But it wasn't without drama amongst X-Men fans. Aside from Quicksilver's less-then-desired look, there seemed to be some inconsistencies -- why was Anna Paquin (Rogue) getting her own magazine cover when Singer himself said he cut her from the film? Why does Wolverine have his adamantium claws back in the future after we saw them get chopped off in 'The Wolverine'? What's with the change in look between the past and future Sentinels? To clear up all these matters, Singer spoke to Empire magazine.

Where previously Singer had said he cut a major scene from 'X-Men: Days of Future Past' that was Rogue's main moment, he amended that previous statement by saying:

It does not mean that we won't see her in the film. Also, I hope to make the sequence available on the DVD as she was quite wonderful in it. She is an important part of the X-Men family. I 'm very pleased she will remain as one of Empire's anniversary covers.

The scene in question saw a moment between Rogue in the future with Professor X (Patrick Stewart), Magneto (Ian McKellen) and Iceman (Shawn Ashmore). "It was one real sequence in the movie," said writer Simon Kinberg. "We felt like it was taking tension out of the main story drive."

As for Wolverine's (Hugh Jackman) sudden resurgence of metallic claws, Singer said, "[Wolverine] has a different relationship with Magneto [in the future], and perhaps Magneto could forge them." We guess that could work(?) But, now, what about the future Sentinels and their ninja assassin look?

They're biomechanical weapons. We had to come up with what would be the ultimate version that could actually, in principle, stop the X-Men. We started with this idea that they were almost made up of magnetic plates slapped over one another, imagining that the plates could contract or grow, so the Sentinel can be skinny to get through a small space or the plates can open up to become a bigger shape. So they have become virtually unstoppable.

With everything going on and the need for Singer to explain some of his cinematic and storytelling choices could very well mean a massive disaster ahead, one akin to 'X-Men: The Last Stand.' There's a lot of moving parts as evidenced by the recently released batch of new photos (shown below), depicting the bulky cast of original 'X-Men' trilogy players, 'First Class' talent and new blood:

But, hey, we might be getting a solo Gambit movie starring Channing Tatum ... so there's that!

"I’m dying to do a Gambit movie with Channing Tatum," said 'X-Men' franchise producer Shuler Donner. "That doesn’t have to be a great big movie. It’s a thief in New Orleans, it’s a whole different story. He’s on board, and I have to get the studio on board. How can anyone resist Channing? He’s such a sweetheart."

Hey, it's no Deadpool, but we'll take it for now.

That wraps up the major comic book movie happenings. Check back next week for another superhero roundup.