Movie News: LEX LUTHOR and ALFRED Cast in MAN OF STEEL Sequel

Written by Andrew Pollard Friday, 31 January 2014

Movie News

Well, we thought that we would be getting some more MAN OF STEEL sequel casting news in February. We also thought that Bryan Cranston or Joaquin Phoenix would be getting the Lex Luthor gig. Turns out we were wrong on both fronts. It’s technically still January, and it’s now been officially confirmed that playing Lex Luthor will be none other than Jesse Eisenberg. Added to that, Jeremy Irons has been cast as Alfred Pennyworth. Holy casting announcements, Batman!

As the combined masses of the Internet strain their minds to try and imagine Eisenberg without hair, director Zack Snyder declared, “Lex Luthor is often considered the most notorious of Superman’s rivals, his unsavoury reputation preceding him since 1940. What’s great about Lex is that he exists beyond the confines of the stereotypical nefarious villain. He’s a complicated and sophisticated character whose intellect, wealth and prominence position him as one of the few mortals able to challenge the incredible might of Superman. Having Jesse in the role allows us to explore that interesting dynamic, and also take the character in some new and unexpected directions.”

On the Alfred front Snyder added, “As everyone knows, Alfred is Bruce Wayne’s most trusted friend, ally and mentor, a noble guardian and father figure. He is an absolutely critical element in the intricate infrastructure that allows Bruce Wayne to transform himself into Batman. It is an honour to have such an amazingly seasoned and gifted actor as Jeremy taking on the important role of the man who mentors and guides the guarded and nearly impervious façade that encapsulates Bruce Wayne.”

So there we have it: two new names added to this Batman/Superman tear-up/team-up. Cinematically, Eisenberg follows in the most recent steps of Kevin Spacey and Gene Hackman, whilst Irons takes over a role made famous by Michael Caine and Michael Gough.

As ever, we’re sure some may question these casting decisions, but both actors certainly have the chops to pull off the role, even if, in Eisenberg’s case at least, they may not be obvious choices for the roles in question. Eisenberg is best known for playing Mack Zuckerberg in THE SOCIAL NETWORK, for which he received Academy Award, Golden Globe Award, SAG Award and BAFTA Award nominations. Irons went one better, actually winning an Academy Award for his turn as Claus von Bulow in REVERSAL OF FORTUNE.

We’d go as far as to say to expect some more casting news in the next month or so, as it’s been pretty much guaranteed that the movie will contain two villains, with Doomsday and Metallo heading up the latest rumours out there.

The MAN OF STEEL sequel – can we please just officially call it BATMAN VS SUPERMAN yet? – sees Henry Cavill return as Clark Kent/Superman, Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne/Batman, Gal Gadot as Diana Prince/Wonder Woman, Amy Adams as Lois Lane, Laurence Fishburne as Perry White and Diana Lane as Martha Kent.

Directed by Zack Snyder, with a screenplay from David Goyer (just for a change), the movie is set to open across the globe on 6th May, 2016.

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0 #2 Andrew Pollard 2014-02-03 14:11
I don't think many people have too much of an issue with Irons, unless they think of him for some of his older work, so I'm totally with you there.

Eisenberg - that's the interesting one. It's definitely got me intrigued. There's the school of thought that says Michael Keaton was Mr. Mom yet turned out to be the best Batman, and that Heath Ledger was best known for A Knight's Tale and being a gay cowboy then put in a simply stunning Joker performance. In a way, the non-expressive nature of Eisenberg can work in the sense that Luthor is often callous, cold, calculated and cynical (any more Cs?). Still, Luthor needs to have the firecracker temper and explosiveness to him. I won't write him off just yet, but it's gonna take something special to truly sway audiences. I guess a lot of it depends on the script. Fans were over the moon at Kevin Spacey as Lex Luthor yet his performance fell short due to a poor story.
0 #1 Derek Wheeler 2014-02-02 19:44
Okay so I get Jeremy Irons especially after his turn as Mason in Beautiful Creatures he plays a very good older gentlemen.

However Eisenberg seems like miscasting. He is a very unexpressive actor. Almost emotionless in his performances. What made 30 minutes or less watchable was that it was laughable how we are supposed to take the danger seriously when clearly the main actor could care less one way or the other.

It's fine for a character who is supposed to seem like they are forever on a pot high but for a character like Luthor who is emotional and expressive it feels like miscasting. Who knows maybe he will prove me wrong after all Elijah Wood made the jump from "kid they put in things to be a face" to "guy who actually knows how to act"

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