Director Bryan Singer wants you to know that it isn't his fault that Superman Returns flopped. Rather, it's kind of sort of the fault of the women for whom he made this movie, but who didn't flock to the theaters to see his badly reviewed, boringly cast version of the franchise.
He's apparently been blaming women since 2011, and continues to do so in the present day, with an interview with Empire:
It was a movie made for a certain kind of audience. Perhaps more of a female audience. It wasn't what it needed to be, I guess. I think I could lop the first quarter off and start the movie a bit more aggressively and maybe find a way to start the movie with the jet disaster sequence or something. I could have grabbed the audience a little more quickly. I don't know what would have helped. Probably nothing.
The funny thing about this quote is even Singer himself admitting that his speculation about pandering to a female audience is maybe him just bullshitting a reason. I am also stumped as to what was so women targeted about it. The lack of excitement? The romance? Kate Bosworth?
Women and Hollywood's Inkoo Kang is stumped too, but in a more comprehensive manner:
It doesn't have a female lead. It doesn't pass the Bechdel test. It doesn't let women drive the plot. It doesn't even feature an interesting Lois Lane the way Man of Steel's Amy Adams character does. In fact, Kate Bosworth's casting is a triumph of superficiality over plausibility. Wholly devoid of gravitas, Bosworth was just 23 at the time of shooting (and looks it onscreen), which implies that Lois Lane was all of 18 when she won her Pulitzer Prize. The nubile casting just didn't work with the seasoned-pro character. Superman Returns offered nothing to women.
Therein lies the real annoyance with what Singer said. If successful directors like him have no idea about how to make a movie that appeals to women, as Kang shows, and seem apathetic about finding out, then will we ever solve the Hollywood gender problem?