Superman Homepage member JC Peralta contacted Jake Rowell, a special effects artist who worked on the film, and asked him this very question:
Rowell: Thanks for the inquiry - I hope you liked the VFX in the film. I was happy with our digital Sups! We got a lot of mileage out of him. As for why? It was determined by the creative team that we use the digital version. They filmed a practical version for most shots - but it never looked quite right. Felt TV like or old 70-80 film - but with better lighting... Don't get me wrong - the flying rig was very impressive - but no matter how you shake it - it will never look like gravity is not an issue. That is the important part of having a guy appear to fly! So - in short, the digital version was easier to control - though it was more expensive. Most of the shots in the 777 plane sequence - was done digital - even the shots with Brandon (actor) - we would replace portions of the actor with the digital body and cape - but keep the head or do a transition to the real face. Really depends on the problem for the given shot.
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