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Batman and Superman face off in first 'Dawn of Justice' posters

Director Zack Snyder reveals the first posters for the DC Comics superhero movie as the first trailer shows a dark tone.

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Ben Affleck's Batman suits up to take on Superman in 2016. twitter.com/ZackSnyder

Batman and Superman are facing off in the first posters for their forthcoming superhero scrap. The Dark Knight and the Man of Steel appear in images advertising "Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice" tweeted by director Zack Snyder.

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Henry Cavill returns as Superman after 2013's "Man of Steel". https://twitter.com/ZackSnyder

It's not due in cinemas until 2016, but the first trailer for and will be shown at special events in certain IMAX theatres today.

"Dawn of Justice" follows Snyder's 2013 Superman movie "Man of Steel", in which Henry Cavill donned the red cape. For the follow-up, Cavill is up against Ben Affleck, playing Batman for the first time. The trailer suggests Batman pits his human resources against Superman's god-like powers in a darker-toned conflict than comic fans expected, inspired by Frank Miller's classic 1986 book "The Dark Knight Returns".

The film will also introduce Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman and Jason Momoa as Aquaman before both characters appear in their own movie.

"Dawn of Justice" will hit IMAX and regular theatres in 3D on 25 March 2016.

The contrasting flyposter-style images seem to ask: "Whose side are you on?", echoing the conflict suggested between the two characters in the trailer, with humanity in the middle. British readers will also be reminded of the Conservative party's infamous "New Labour, new danger" poster advertised in the run-up to the 1997 election, which pasted demon eyes onto an image of soon-to-be prime minister Tony Blair.

We're still a way away from seeing Batman and Superman go face-to-face, but there's no shortage of superhero action to keep us going in the meantime. This summer sees the Avengers return in Marvel's "Age of Ultron", while a new take on the Fantastic Four has also seen its first trailer leaked and poster released.

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Josh Trank's 'Fantastic Four' stars (L-R) Kate Mara, Miles Teller and Michael B. Jordan, with Jamie Bell as rock-like hero The Thing. 20th Century Fox