Jesse Eisenberg Cast as Lex Luthor, Jeremy Irons as Alfred in Man of Steel Sequel

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Jesse Eisenberg Cast as Lex Luthor, Jeremy Irons as Alfred in Man of Steel Sequel

Batman vs Superman Logo

Let the "Mark Zuckerberg is Lex Luthor" jokes begin in earnest.

More casting news from Warner Brothers for its upcoming Batman/Superman crossover film, this time for supporting characters Lex Luthor and Alfred Pennyworth. Playing the role of evil genius Luthor in the Man of Steel sequel is none other than Jesse Eisenberg, perhaps most famous for his performance as Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg in the 2010 film The Social Network. And yes, this is the part where you can make the jokes about him already knowing how to play a world-conquering supervillain.

"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," said movie director Zack Snyder in a Warner Bros. Pictures press release. "Having Jesse in the role allows us to explore that interesting dynamic, and also take the character in some new and unexpected directions."

Playing Batman's loyal butler and ally will be veteran actor Jeremy Irons, recently seen in the Showtime series The Borgias. "He (Alfred) is an absolutely critical element in the intricate infrastructure that allows Bruce Wayne to transform himself into Batman," Snyder said. "It is an honor 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 fašade that encapsulates Bruce Wayne."

The still untitled Batman/Superman film already stirred up plenty of casting debate a few months back when it announced that Ben Affleck would play the role of Batman. More recently, it was confirmed that actress Gal Gadot would portray Wonder Woman in the movie, which was recently delayed until 2016.

What are your thoughts on this casting news? Is it a pair of bold choices, or evidence that DC's next film will be a dud?

Source: BusinessWire

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Jesse Eisenburg is really surprising as Luthor. I guess they're taking the character in a pretty different direction as far as previous portrayals go (Gene Hackman/Kevin Spacey in the movies, and Clancy Brown in the show). Still, he's definitely got acting chops. He could do it.

Jeremy Irons is just awesome though. He's going to be a kickass Alfred.

Whaaaat? Ben Affleck as Batman I can get behind, but this? Since Jesse Eisenberg plays the exact same character in every goddamn movie he's in (I personally believe he's an awful actor), it's hard to see Lex Luthor portrayed by him. But who knows? Maybe he'll own the role like Heath Ledger did with the Joker.

Doesn't seem like bad choice to me, I just have a very hard time imagining Eisenberg been bald, on the other hand. =p

Jesse Eisenberg is a fantastic actor but I don't know how he will do as a villain.

Wait, seriously? Why? Jesse Eisenberg... I don't see it. Then again, I would have said the same thing about Michael Rosenbaum before seeing Smallville.

Given that there is at least a precedent (as far as I am concerned anyway) that awkward-seeming casting can turn out well sometimes, I'll not take this news too badly just yet... But Luthor is one of my favorite villains from the DC universe, so I hope this movie's iteration of him is good.

Jeremy Irons as Alfred sounds brilliant.

Yes, Irons should get more attention.

He's a homophobic halfwit:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/03/jeremy-irons-on-gay-marri_n_3009495.html

Seriously, watch the video.

That really is a man we should have in the media.
I cannot believe that after saying those things people are still considering hiring him.
Unbelievable.

Why don't they just cast Topher Grace as Lex?

Jeremy Irons as Alfred is the only piece of casting I've simply nodded to so far from DC's upcoming cinematic shoggoth.

Don't get me wrong, I want to keep an open mind but I'm not confident yet.

JenSeven:
Yes, Irons should get more attention.

He's a homophobic halfwit:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/03/jeremy-irons-on-gay-marri_n_3009495.html

Seriously, watch the video.

That really is a man we should have in the media.
I cannot believe that after saying those things people are still considering hiring him.
Unbelievable.

Haha! That view is so bizarre and shoe horned it comes off more hilarious than offensive, or at least less so than some other figures in the media. Does that let him off? Not really, but I can't be bothered to get mad at the awkward ramblings of an elderly man with no real influence.

JenSeven:
Yes, Irons should get more attention.

He's a homophobic halfwit:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/03/jeremy-irons-on-gay-marri_n_3009495.html

Seriously, watch the video.

That really is a man we should have in the media.
I cannot believe that after saying those things people are still considering hiring him.
Unbelievable.

Just from the video, I couldn't tell if he was homophobic or not. He said a lot of really stupid things and he mixed himself up a lot, but he didn't seem to be overtly homophobic. Just ignorant and uneducated.

I can't wait to not see this movie. The casting director should be fired. I like each person listed here individually, but they just aren't meant for the roles they are being cast in. I can't picture it. And won't. Burn in hell, this movie. Burn eternally.

I love the Jesse Eisenberg decision, it means that they can't go straight for the lazy villain stereotypes. Hopefully this means they're actually going to try and tap into that some of that rivalry and sense of frustration that all their achievements are still less than those of a person who was just born powerful.

It could also mean a somewhat new interpretation of Lex which would be cool too. I don't know if Eisenberg can do swagger (but he's a great character, so don't count it out) but if he can't there's still a lot of places they can go from there.

I guess Jeremy Irons is okay, I'm going to miss Caine but at least this means they're not going to sully the continuity of the Nolan trilogy and it gives them more freedom to match tones between Superman and Batman. (I actually think there wouldn't be much rivalry between Superman and Nolanverse Christian Bale styled Batman. I actually think Batman would recognise that Superman can do a better and cleaner job than he could and would either be content working with him, or take the opportunity to retire. Which wouldn't be much fun)

Um, isn't he a little young to play Lex?

Whoa. That's probably the worst person they could have gotten for the role. Eisenberg is about as intimidating as a clawless kitten, and just imagine how ridiculous he would look bald.

So, I get this Lex Luthor will be Steve Jobs back in the beginning of Apple's rise to fame. Not that far apart from Zuckerberg, but way more douchebag, and less socially akward.

That is actually interesting for Lex Luthor. It WOULD work better if we had Lionel there with him.

Snyder:
"He (Alfred) is an absolutely critical element in the intricate infrastructure that allows Bruce Wayne to transform himself into Batman,"

Christ-on-a-bike, is he also going to try cramming a Batman Origin-Story into this bloated flick? Why would anyone think that Batman needs another origin story? He's BATMAN!

JenSeven:
Yes, Irons should get more attention.

He's a homophobic halfwit:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/03/jeremy-irons-on-gay-marri_n_3009495.html

Seriously, watch the video.

That really is a man we should have in the media.
I cannot believe that after saying those things people are still considering hiring him.
Unbelievable.

Because a 70 year old guy doesn't support the liberal views on something irrelevant to what he does he should be banished from society?

Man, it was kinder when we just killed people who disagreed with us.

Jupiter065:

Snyder:
"He (Alfred) is an absolutely critical element in the intricate infrastructure that allows Bruce Wayne to transform himself into Batman,"

Christ-on-a-bike, is he also going to try cramming a Batman Origin-Story into this bloated flick? Why would anyone think that Batman needs another origin story? He's BATMAN!

He is just talking about how Alfred is an important character to the Batman mythos, and Batman as a characther himself. Chill.

Eisenberg played an amazing ahole in the social network. Someone photoshop him bald. Could pull it off. Jeremy Irons is ok I guess.

A man known mostly for playing meek and social awkward characters playing a determined, devious, and commanding businessman? What could possibly for wrong?

Fuck, to think I was actually looking forward to this. I could handle Afflack as Batman, I could have handled skinny beauty model Wonder Woman, but this? C'mon DC, get your shit together.

Boo I say. Screw Eisenberg, get Heisenberg. They should have gone with Bryan Cranston.

Those are some interesting casting choices.

I've always thought of Luthor as at least a few years older than Superman and as someone with a charismatic, intimidating presence, neither of which I really see in the meek-looking babyfaced Eisenberg. I'm imagining his bald head sticking out of the iconic Luthor battle armor and I'm having a hard time not snickering.

Irons could turn out ok. I wonder if his sharper features and voice will lead him to play a harsher, more strict Alfred than his predecessors.

ShakerSilver:
A man known mostly for playing meek and social awkward characters playing a determined, devious, and commanding businessman? What could possibly for wrong?

Mark Zuckerberg was meek? How did you get that?

JenSeven:
Yes, Irons should get more attention.

He's a homophobic halfwit:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/03/jeremy-irons-on-gay-marri_n_3009495.html

Seriously, watch the video.

That really is a man we should have in the media.
I cannot believe that after saying those things people are still considering hiring him.
Unbelievable.

Without meaning to go off topic here, you're essentially saying:

"Here is a man with an unpopular opinion, as I find is opinion morally reprehensible, he should not be allowed to express it in the public eye."

Not how "free speech" works I'm afraid. He rather clumsily made a suggestion about the state of marriage, saying nothing particularly offensive. I understand the desire for equality and why people strive to achieve that, but be careful you aren't encroaching on the liberties of others while demanding your own.

On topic: Eisenberg as Lex? Well, could be worse. We'll just have to see how it plays out. I can imagine Irons as Alfred and Affleck as Bruce Wayne, but I don't think anything will top the casting of the Dark Knight trilogy.

And in other news Steve Buscemi is looking forward to playing Robin in the Batman sequel. Says "Kevin James will take Catwoman in an interesting new direction" in recent interview.
In all seriousness, Eisenberg is not who I would've picked for the role of Luther. I'm not even that aware of Superman and his mythos but Luther has always struck me as cunning, powerful and determined, Eisenberg playing the role might pull it off but I think he'd probably make the guy look more weasely than anything. I also don't imagine he'd be able to pull off bald.
But hey, maybe he'll make it all work out and we'll wonder why we ever doubted him for the role.

This is just.... confusing. So now Batman is going to be old enough to be Lex Luthors dad? That might be a BIT of a stretch, but still. I hated their choice for Batman, but this one just leaves me baffled.

Has no one else figured this out yet? Jesse Eisenberg is the exact same age as Henry Caville. They were trying to make Luthor and Superman equals down to their age.

So are they doing mad scientist Lex Luthor? The character has evolved into a business villain and has to come with a charismatic but intimidating persona, that's kind of his thing. Why didn't they just cast Michael Cera as Lex Luthor?

I think this might actually work well. I know he doesn't play evil people but in the Social Network, he was excellent at being almost sociopathic in his sometimes blatant disregard for other people's feelings. He exuded an aura that basically said "I'm smarter than you and I know it." Take that further and add some malevolence and I think he'd make a very convincing villain.

Scrawny villains characters can get intimidating, but if they were going that route I'd have have gone with Mark Ryder who played cesear Borgia's from the Canal+ Borgias show. That dude is so impressive. I honestly don't know Eisenberg and can't remember seeing him in anything so I won't pass judgement, but from the picture it's kind of hard to see him as a villain and not just some awkward teenager (disaster if you can't sell it, ask george lucas).

PS: Jeremy Irons is kind of a meh choice. Good actor, easy obvious choice. And completely uninspiring.

Ha! Even Chrome's spell check corrects Eisenberg to Heisenberg.

Chester Rabbit:
Um, isn't he a little young to play Lex?

There going for a young super genius billionaire type and as he already played Mark Zuckerberg who is a year younger and is the 66th richest man in the world it will be interesting though if it works who knows but both Jesse and Henry are 30.

JenSeven:
Yes, Irons should get more attention.

He's a homophobic halfwit:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/03/jeremy-irons-on-gay-marri_n_3009495.html

Seriously, watch the video.

That really is a man we should have in the media.
I cannot believe that after saying those things people are still considering hiring him.
Unbelievable.

God forbid someone has a different opinion than you!

He's an old UK citizen who until he was 19 homosexuality was illegal so just like many people who grew up with it as a crime they don't change easy if at all.

Toadfish1:
Boo I say. Screw Eisenberg, get Heisenberg. They should have gone with Bryan Cranston.

Honestly, I thought this was the one obvious way to go now that they let Kevin Spacey have a crack at it. I can get behind Ben Affleck as Batman, but htey just painted TRAINWRECK with big shiny letters on this ride.

*before reading the article*
Jesse Eisenberg? Wonder who that is.
*To the IMDBmobile*
... Hah. Hahah. HA HA HA!... oh wait, they're serious?

Yeah, still not actually interested in "Man of Steel 2: We Gotta Compete with Marvel, Dammit!"

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