Leonardo DiCaprio pointing his finger in The Wolf of Wall Street.

Zack Snyder Wanted Leonardo DiCaprio to Play Lex Luthor in BvS

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is one of the most divisive superhero movies of all time, and it continues to make headlines all these years later. Zack Snyder wanted Leonardo DiCaprio to play Lex Luthor in BvS but settled for a note about Justice League.

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BvS is full of controversial elements, but the one that causes the most debate is Jesse Eisenberg’s portrayal of Lex Luthor. The Zombieland star played the iconic villain as more of a mad scientist than a calculated businessman. That’s why, over the years, fans have wondered what it would have been like if the movie had landed another actor. The usual choice is Bryan Cranston, but Snyder set his sights a little higher.

During an appearance on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, Snyder revealed he talked to one of Hollywood’s biggest stars about playing Luthor. “Leonardo DiCaprio, I talked to about it,” he said. “He had a lot of great ideas just in the meeting. I think, in the end, he was like, ‘Ehhh, I don’t know.’ But he was smart about the material and really smart about the character.”

Related: Doctor Manhattan’s Big Blue Package Is Still the Ultimate Litmus Test for Zack Snyder’s Watchmen

Snyder went on to say that DiCaprio gave him an idea that he later incorporated into Justice League. “I think he was the one who mentioned to me this idea about Superman fighting the Justice League,” he explained. “And I was like, ‘Oh, that sounds cool.'”

DiCaprio may have played Luthor a different way in BvS, and it’s possible that had he taken on the part, the movie would’ve been better received and caused less of a mess. However, living in a world of hypotheticals isn’t helpful to anyone, especially when it comes to the DC Extended Universe.


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Jackson Hayes
Jackson Hayes is an Associate Editor at The Escapist. Starting his writing career in 2017, he quickly rose the ranks and became an editor. He's spent the last six years working at outlets such as CBR, Heroic Hollywood and Full Circle Cinema, where he's covered various sports games, Call of Duty, the MCU, and other major properties. You can follow him on Twitter @jacksonhayes67