The aforementioned treatment comes courtesy of HitFix’s Drew McWeeny, who has written a pretty extensive summary of how the story progresses. We’ve rounded up some of the key differences from that treatment to Man of Steel below:
The treatment still opens on Krypton, but under very different circumstances. Zod’s army is seen on a battlefield trying to break defensive lines held by Jor-El. Zod is trying to destroy Krypton because he believes his people would be better served terraforming a new planet that has been discovered (Earth) and moving all Kryptonians there.
Zod and Jor-El have a fight sequence at the power plant (where Zod is trying to enact his plan), and while Zod wins the battle, he is quickly arrested and sent to the Phantom Zone.
Faora is now Zod’s wife, and while she is indeed punished, she is not sent to the Phantom Zone.
Jor-El goes back to try and reverse Zod’s actions, but the planet is already doomed and he ends up being targeted by the Kryptonian government as a suspected loyal to Zod.
Seeing that he cannot convince the Kryptonians otherwise, Jor-El sends his son to Earth.
Faora ends up stealing a spaceship to escape Krypton’s destruction.
After Krypton explodes and we see baby Kal-El heading to Earth, the film cuts to the adult Clark Kent working on the oil rig seen in the film. He saves people from disaster, just as in Man of Steel, but this time as an employee of the rig.
Kent is working as a freelance journalist in the treatment, and goes home to see his parents, who are both alive at this point.
While going through mail at his parents’ home, Clark receives a job offer for the Daily Planet.
The treatment actually shows Kent shaving using his heat vision bounced off a mirror.
There’s a tornado sequence in Smallville in which Clark flies around and saves everyone, using his superbreath to blow the tornado out. Jonathan Kent does not die here, and is instead proud of his son’s heroic display.
Jonathan Kent tells adult Clark about the ship in the barn, which Clark has known about for a long time but has thus far been too scared to confront.
The ship in the barn becomes the “Fortress of Solitude,” as it opens upon Clark approaching it to reveal Jor-El’s lab—though only Clark can see it. He is presented with a message from both of his parents and also sees the final moments of Krypton play out. At the end of the presentation, Clark is given the suit, at which point he has an emotional breakdown.
Clark’s “turning on” of the ship again sends out a distress beacon, which was outfitted by Jor-El to be a beacon for any surviving Kryptonians to come and find Clark. Hearing this, Faora wakes from her hypersleep and sets out for Earth.
The film’s Lois Lane is annoyed by the freelancer Clark Kent, because he scoops her on a big story. She is assigned to cover the grand opening of the Metropolis/Gotham rail link (Batman reference!), which leads to a major action sequence in which Clark and Lois are both on the train (branded with a LEXCORP logo) when it suddenly goes out of control. Clark rips his clothes off to reveal the Superman suit and proceeds to save everyone from the train before seeking out the people who sabotaged it in the first place.
People take photos and video of Clark saving everyone on the train, which is how the alien storyline comes into play. Lois’ father, military official General Sam Lane, is instantly worried about this “super-powered threat.”
Lois coins the term “Superman” in the Daily Planet when writing about the train crash.
Faora crash-lands in Smallville and, after healing from the sun, rampages through the town until she finds Kal-El’s ship and activates the Phantom Zone generator that brings Zod to Earth via portal. He is badly wounded from the Phantom Zone, but the Earth’s sun heals him.
Faora and Zod use the ship’s computer to download a full understanding of English.
Jonathan Kent encourages Clark to go after the Kryptonians and save Earth. No apprehensiveness about his son’s abilities here.
The fight on the Smallville street remains intact, but it’s different in that Faora recognizes Superman’s need to save random citizens from distress so she keeps distracting him by attacking bystanders. Superman is then seen going off to rescue strangers before continuing his fight with Faora.
During the Smallville fight, Superman almost defeats a very weakened Zod, but has to leave in order to save the town from a giant fire Faora has created.
Jonathan dies from the collateral damage that Faora has done in Smallville.
While recuperating, Zod becomes furious that Faora is more powerful than him, and after blaming her for him being sent to the Phantom Zone, proceeds to kill her.
Lois’ father General Lane continues to believe that Superman is a threat and thinks he is part of the invasion force. He’s essentially a more fully-formed version of Christopher Meloni’s character.
While working on a story about the Smallville attack, Lois stays at the Kent’s farm and consoles Clark following his father’s death. She is never suspicious that he might be Superman.
General Lane sets up a command post in Metropolis in the hopes of attracting Zod and Superman. Zod appears in the city ready to fight, and after a military attack Superman shows up to battle Zod. No World Engine mumbo jumbo.
Zod and Superman proceed to fight, but when Zod starts attacking citizens, Superman takes off away from the city in order to minimize collateral damage (Interesting…).
During the fight, Lois Lane recruits a young boy named Jimmy Olsen to snap pictures.
Zod eventually brings the fight back to Smallville, where Superman opens a portal using his old ship in order to send Zod back to the Phantom Zone. Zod is not killed. Though Clark decides to destroy the ship, Martha convinces him it’s his last link to his people so he moves it to the Arctic.
After the battle, General Lane picks up “alien metals and small shards of green rock” from the wreckage (Kryptonite). He is then seen talking on the phone to a visible Lex Luthor, who asks Lane to send the materials to his office for analysis.
At the end of the film, Superman writes an open letter to Earth telling them the truth about himself and his home planet, and Clark returns to the Daily Planet. Lois does not find out that Clark is Superman.