Warner Bros.

"You're Superman!"

Imagine hearing those words as an actor searching for your next gig. You'd be grateful to witness your hard work pay off—people know who you are based on the most prominent role of your career. However, to some extent, you'd loathe "being" Superman because that's a fictional character, and you're an actor seeking your next opportunity.

Yet people can't seem to comprehend that you're not a superhero in real life. As a result, the phones stop ringing, and auditions slow down. That's a hardship George Reeves had to find a way to overcome.

"The producers wouldn't give me a job," Reeves told the Associated Press in 1958. "They'd take one look at me and say it was impossible."

How could an actor with 26 years’ worth of acting credits and a classic role NOT get a job? He was typecast.

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While his "in front of the camera" career was frozen, Reeves moved behind the camera and started producing and directing. It began with a few episodes of Adventures of Superman.

"I took over as director of the last 13 segments of Superman we made last fall. I did it as sort of a chance, but I was surprised to find out how much I knew. I suppose you ought to absorb some knowledge after being in the business as long as I have."

He continued, "Now I'm enthused about doing more. I'm forming a production company, and we plan to make a couple of science fiction features back-to-back. The trick stuff should come easy. We've done everything imaginable in the Superman series."

Did the actor know that taking on the role of Superman would lead him down the path of producing and directing? No. However, he considered the impact and the possibility of being typecast. Reeves took the role anyway and had a direct response as to why.

"I was hungry."

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