What Warner Bros. says it is, says judge.

In the end, the judge said he was largely persuaded by the testimony of the Warner president Alan Horn, who said he was “daunted” by the weak performance of a “Superman” film in 1987. Mr. Horn said, “My view of ‘Superman’ as an evergreen theatrical motion picture property is that it is viable, but not — but challenged.”

“Superman Returns,” directed by Bryan Singer and released by Warner in 2006, took in $200 million at the box office in the United States. But Mr. Horn testified that Warner was not entirely at ease with the outcome. “What hurt us is that the reviews and so on for the ‘Superman’ movie,” said Mr. Horn, “did not get the kind of critical acclaim that ‘Batman’ got, and we have other issues with ‘Superman’ that concern us.”