(Editors Note: All editorials are solely the opinion of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of DC Comics News or its staff.)
If you’ve been spending any amount of time on the internet over the past couple of weeks or so you’ve likely seen two headlines;
“Ben Affleck Cast as Batman, World Soon To End.”
“Bryan Cranston (sort of, kind of) cast as Lex Luthor (maybe).
Now while Ben being Batman is guaranteed, to the chagrin of many, and to the joy of some (yay), the role of Lex Luthor is still up in the air with many people thinking that Bryan Cranston being the obvious choice if not the only choice. Now while Bryan would likely do a good job with a well written story (if he gets a well written story), I feel that he’s not quite the Lex Luthor that we’re looking for right now.
I’ve always envisioned Luthor has being in his later thirties to early forties, charismatic, cultured and deeply methodical.
Cranston is fantastic, but he just doesn’t embody that for me.
Now, to avoid all negativity let’s take a look at some of the other choices people have been talking about for Lex Luthor.
Now, it seems appropriate to start with Bryan’s co-star on the amazing show Breaking Bad, and if you haven’t watched Breaking Bad shame on you.
Aaron Paul is a fantastic actor, if he plays his cards right decades from now he’ll be remembered as one of the greatest actors of the early 2000’s. But Lex Luthor he is not.
The problem here is that Aaron carries too much of the “everyman” vibe about him. He seems like the kind of guy you’d just go grab a beer and a sandwich with for lunch and talk about local sporting events (people talk about those during lunch right?). This does however make him a great candidate for…The Flash.
Think about it, all he’d have to do is work out a bit and get a little toned, not every superhero needs Bat-abs. To me he seems like he’d be able to take a great role like The Flash, Wally preferable, and just run with it (heh).
WHOA, where did this casting idea come from!?
All kidding aside, whether you liked or hated Smallville, it was hard to deny that Michael was likely the best actor on the show and one of the best reasons to come back every week. Along with Smallville Michael is no stranger to the DCU, having done voicework most famously as The Flash in JL and JLU, along with some smaller parts in Batman Beyond, The Zeta Project, and Teen Titans.
Sadly DC won’t consider Michael for a moment. Having played the bald billionaire for so long they won’t want to confuse audiences, this is SOP (See: Bat Embargo) for DC so it wouldn’t really surprise me.
Originally Fassbender was one of my choices for Batman, but since that has been passed on to Boston Wayne we’ll go with plan be for Mr. Flashsender.
Now, I don’t have to tell many of you how fantastic an actor Michael Fassbender is, a lot of you know him from Inglorious Basterds, or 300, or X-Men First Class. But if you haven’t seen Hunger, Shame, or A Dangerous Method, do yourselves a favour and watch them.
I feel like there isn’t too much to say here, he definitely has a great look for Lex Luthor, he can give off an amazing aura of dominance, superiority, and just being able to act like he is above the rest of us. One of the many reasons he’s a great Magneto, and could make a great Lex Luthor. And he’s still ours because he was in Jonah Hex (for better or worse) before First Class.
Or if we’re lucky they’ll do a Laurence Of Arabia remake and cast him mostly because his resemblance to Peter O’Toole is borderline creepy.
Alongside Bryan Cranston, Mark has likely received the most love to play Lex. And frankly, I’d be all for it, Mark Strong is…well, a very strong actor, and I think he could do a lot of great work with the character…however. Despite how poorly executed Green Lantern was he did do a fairly good job with Sinestro (with what little he was given), and I’d like to see him given another chance to really bring the Master of Fear to life…well, animated life.
Though if Sinestro is going to be all CGI he could always end up pulling double duty. Like a number of other actors listed here he brings a fantastic and powerful presence on the screen, whether the movie is good or bad he brings it, Zero Dark Thirty, Sherlock Holmes, Robin Hood, and other…interesting choices he’s made in the past. Though if you want a really great Mark performances watch Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, he doesn’t have a “large” part, but he does have a very important part and he kills it.
Young John Hurt
Yes it’s a complete cheat, but how amazing would this be, one of the most phenomenal actors of our time getting to play Lex Luthor. I would pay money to have a time machine made so we can go back and pull John Hurt from the late 70s or early 80s.
This is the most unlikely of my choices mostly because time machines haven’t been invented yet (or outlawed as Joseph Gordon-Levitt would have us believe), but when they are and we can bring young John Hurt to the time they were invented, then bring YJH to this point in time to play Lex it will be great because John Hurt is a fantastic actor who has an amazing range as an actor, has a fantastic presence on screen and just looks the part as well. But since we can’t right now we’ll just have to appreciate the old guy as he is now.
These are just a couple of great actors who could play Lex Luthor, coupled with other performers such as Idris Elba (he could be Luthor and Luther), Billy Zane, a bald guy with Clancy Brown’s voice, and Danny Trejo. But I digress, these are just some of the people I’d consider and really, Snyder and Co. will likely pick whoever they want and not baulk at the backlash, for better or worse.
What do you think?