Richard Lester began as a director in British comedy and first made his name with The Beatlesí A Hard Dayís Night (1964) and subsequently directed a lot of other British comedies such as The Knack (1965), A Funny Thing Happened On the Way to the Forum (1967) and Petulia (1968). Lesterís other genre outings were Mouse on the Moon (1963), the Beatles fantasy Help! (1965), the surrealist WWII black comedy How I Won the War (1967) and the post-holocaust black comedy The Bed Sitting Room (1969).
The subsequent Superman films were Superman III (1983) and Superman IV: The Quest for Peace (1987), the latter made after the Salkinds sold the property due to the flop of III. The Salkinds also made Supergirl (1984) and the tv series Superboy (1988-90).