Eisenberg, Not Heisenberg, to Play Lex Luthor in Batman vs. Superman
After hearing the news that The Social Network star Jesse Eisenberg was cast as Lex Luthor, I think that DC Comics fans were in a state of collective shock. Considering that Bryan Cranston was interested in the role and would have been absolutely perfect, fans were absolutely flabbergasted that Jesse Eisenberg will get the leading antagonist role for Man of Steel 2, AKA Batman vs. Superman.
I’m pretty sure that the conversation at Warner Brothers went something like this:
Warner Bros. Executive: “Get me Heisenberg!”
Zack Snyder: *Gets him Eisenberg*
I haven’t seen a lot of Jesse Eisenberg’s acting but I don’t exactly rate him very highly in terms of range. In terms of socially awkward and unashamed asshole roles, he does very well. Can he pull off charismatic but secretly diabolically evil? I’m not sold on that yet.
His age is another factor that makes me question his casting. I know that Supes and Lex are generally portrayed as being around the same age but while Eisenberg is only five months Henry Cavill’s junior, they look at least five years apart. Still, that wouldn’t be the first time that Zack Snyder has asked a lot in terms of suspension of disbelief. I love her but Amy Adams’s Lois Lane does look a few years older than Henry Cavill’s Superman.
Now, the casting could turn out okay. When Ben Affleck and Gal Gadot were cast to fan outrage and/or confusion, people brought up the confusion over Heath Ledger being cast as The Joker in The Dark Knight. The difference between then and now is that Chris Nolan only cast one role out of left field and he’s a fantastic director and Snyder is loading up on questionable casting to go along with his questionable directing.
I will defend some of Snyder casting decisions though. An acquaintance had questioned Kevin Costner as Pa Kent but we both agreed that he was absolutely fantastic in Man of Steel despite being a bit off the board in terms of casting. Ben Affleck isn’t the best actor in the world but if he can be in Snyder’s ear about everything, the movie will be a lot better than it otherwise could have been. All hope is not lost yet just because we’re all massively confused about the Lex Luthor and Wonder Woman castings.
I should also note that Jeremy Irons has been cast to replace Michael Caine as Alfred. Irons is a pretty good actor so that shouldn’t be an issue. At least we can all agree on this.