Supergirl is a 1984 superhero film directed by Jeannot Szwarc, and stars Helen Slater in her first motion picture role in the title role of the DC Comics superheroine Supergirl. Faye Dunaway(who received top billing) played the primary villain, Selena. The film was a spin-off from the Salkinds' Superman film series which starred Christopher Reeve. The movie also featured Marc McClure reprising his role as Jimmy Olsen from the Superman films.
The film failed to impress critics and audiences. Slater, however, was nominated for a Saturn Award for her performance by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films. The film does contain some expansions on the Superman movie mythology, such as taking the viewer into the Phantom Zone itself (in the first two Superman films, it was merely represented by a spinning square mirror). The story uses sorcery (a noted Superman weakness, but less commonly utilized than kryptonite) as a counterattack on Supergirl.
Released on video over the years by different companies, the film's first DVD release was by the independent home video company Anchor Bay Entertainment in 2000, under license from StudioCanal. Warner Bros. recently acquired the rights to the film and reissued it on DVD late in 2006 to coincide with the reissues on DVD of the other Superman films. Although it is related to the Superman films produced between 1978 and 1987 with Christopher Reeve, it is not included in any of Warner Bros.' Superman DVD box set collections released in 2006.
Kara Zor-El (Helen Slater) lives in an isolated Kryptonian community called Argo City, in a pocket of trans-dimensional space. Zaltar (Peter O'Toole) allows Kara to see a unique and immensely powerful item known as the Omegahedron, which he has borrowed without the knowledge of the city government, and which powers the city. However, after a mishap, the Omegahedron is blown out into space. Much to the distress of her parents (Simon Ward and Mia Farrow), Kara follows it to Earth (undergoing a transformation into "Supergirl" in the process) in an effort to recover it and save the city.
On Earth, the Omegahedron is recovered by Selena (Faye Dunaway), a power-hungry would-be witch assisted by the feckless Bianca (Brenda Vaccaro) and seeking to free herself from her relationship with warlock Nigel (Peter Cook). Whilst not knowing exactly what it is, Selena quickly realizes that the Omegahedron is powerful and can enable her to perform real magical spells. Supergirl arrives on Earth and discovers her powers. Following the path of the Omegahedron, she takes the name Linda Lee, identifies herself as a cousin of Clark Kent, and enrols at an all-girls school where she befriends Lucy Lane (Maureen Teefy), a younger sister of Lois Lane who happens to be studying there. Supergirl also meets and becomes enamoured with Ethan (Hart Bochner) who works as a groundskeeper at the school.
Ethan also catches the eye of Selena, who drugs him with a love potion, however Ethan regains consciousness in Selena's absence and wanders out into the streets. An angry Selena uses her new-found powers to animate a construction vehicle, which she sends to bring Ethan back, causing chaos in the streets as it does so. Supergirl rescues Ethan and he falls in love with her instead while in guise of Linda Lee.
Supergirl and Selena repeatedly battle in various ways, until Selena uses her powers to put Supergirl in an "eternal void" known as the Phantom Zone. Here, stripped of her powers, she wanders the bleak landscape and nearly drowns in an oily bog. Yet she finds help in Zaltar, who has exiled himself to the Phantom Zone as a punishment for losing the Omegahedron. Zaltar sacrifices his life to allow Supergirl to escape. Back on Earth, Selena misuses the Omegahedron to make herself a "princess of Earth", with Ethan as her lover and consort. Emerging from the Phantom Zone, Supergirl regains her powers and defeats Selena. Free from Selena's spell, Ethan admits his love for Linda and that he knows that she and Supergirl are one and the same, but knows it is possible he may never see her again and understands she must save Argo City. The final scene shows Kara returning the Omegahedron to a darkened Argo City, which promptly lights up again.
- Helen Slater as Kara Zor-El / Linda Lee / Supergirl
- Faye Dunaway as Selena
- Peter O'Toole as Zaltar
- Hart Bochner as Ethan
- Mia Farrow as Alura
- Brenda Vaccaro as Bianca
- Peter Cook as Nigel
- Simon Ward as Zor-El
- Marc McClure as Jimmy Olsen
- Maureen Teefy as Lucy Lane
- David Healy as Mr. Danvers
- Sandra Dickinson as The Pretty Young Lady