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Laurence Fishburne To Play Perry White In 'Man Of Steel'

by Kevin Jagernauth
August 3, 2011 2:57 AM
10 Comments
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Get ready for the worst geek hand-wringing and casual racism this side of the Idris Elba/"Thor" embarrassment that cropped up a few months ago: EW reports that Laurence Fishburne has been cast as Perry White in Zack Snyder's forthcoming "Man of Steel."

Previously played by Jackie Cooper and Frank Langella in earlier iterations of the Superman movies, White is the demanding Editor-In-Chief of The Daily Planet where our humble Clark Kent works when he's not running around in tights. But he's a white guy in the comics! Yeah, who cares. Race doesn't play in this role, Fishburne is a great addition to the already solid cast and frankly, he's a solid fit the part of the newspaper man who wants the best out of his staff. Fishburne has been a regular on "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" for the past three seasons, but recently left the show and has rebounded into movies quite nicely. So thumbs up on this bit of casting and really, across the board, "Man of Steel" has racked up a pretty great ensemble.

Fishburne joins Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Diane Lane, Kevin Costner, Michael Shannon, Antje Traue, Russell Crowe, Julia Ormond Harry Lennix and Christopher Meloni in the film that is already constructing sets for a fall shoot. "Man of Steel" flies into theaters on June 14, 2013.

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10 Comments

  • adri | August 3, 2011 10:51 AMReply

    In other related news Tyler Perry cast Megan Fox as Medea in 'Medea Goes To Hell And Everybody Is Happy Now'.

  • hmm | August 3, 2011 7:20 AMReply

    There was nothing embarrassing about complaining about Elba. Heimdall is the whitest of the Norse gods, which is what the comics are based on. It's kind of spitting on the religion as well the comic source just for the sake of shoehorning in a black guy, no matter how good he was.

  • Daniel | August 3, 2011 5:29 AMReply

    I sure hope there isn't a backlash about his race. My first thought upon hearing the news was "Oh, good, he'll be a much more interesting Perry White than Frank Langella." I respected Singer's attempt to be faithful to Donner's films (and by extension, to the iconography of the comics), but the creative failure of 'Superman Returns' made it apparent that a fresher take is needed.

    As for the rest of the cast being packed with other talented and expensive actors...this is a bad thing? I'm with Kevin on this one; it's a solid cast, and that's a good sign. It sure as hell worked for the original 'Superman' and it sure as hell worked for Nolan's Batman films. Was it a failure of nerve when they cast Gary Oldman beside a then-relatively-unknown Christian Bale? Or Gene Hackman opposite a stage actor named Christopher Reeve?

    There are things to worry about with the production, for sure (the reportedly unfinished script and Zack Snyder at the helm both worry me a little), but so far casting isn't the problem.

    Color me cautiously optimistic.

  • sezi | August 3, 2011 5:04 AMReply

    This cast doesn't really work as an ensemble. Individually, there are some nice bits and pieces, but put them all together and it gets weird. The female romantic lead is a decade older than the male, and the actress playing his mom looks barely any older. And they have such a facial resemblance they could easily play sisters. Icky. Dude playing the villain is still pretty much unknown to people. The biggest name in the movie plays dead dad #1 and insures a ton of flashback time will be spent. After all the complaints of a too small Superman, most of this cast is taller and bigger than the lead. Very strange choice.

    One of the big stories of this superhero summer was how big and buff Hemsworth and Evans got. Their movies got lots of positive PR and swooning womens' mag articles for that. Superman is going to be much smaller than they got and the effect will be heightened by the unusually tall cast that was chosen to surround him. Sure camera trickery can solve some of that, but why pick a cast that necessitates that trickery in the first place? A lot of strange decisions were made in pasting this cast together in my opinion.

  • oho | August 3, 2011 4:41 AMReply

    I wonder if TPTB were given a sneak peak at the Immortals? Is Cavill causing a failure of nerve, because this is quite the expensive cast.

    If Green Lantern and its 1 and half stars cost $200 million, how much are they blowing on this? Avatar's official budget was $240 million. Dare we dream?

  • padre | August 3, 2011 4:38 AMReply

    So the unnatural dude who doesn't respect Young Hercules, also doesn't respect the Norse or their gods either. Typical. Is it so unimaginable that decent people with souls would respect other people's gods?!?!?!?!! But the warning signs were there The Unnatural One, when he turned his face against Young Hercules. It was clear to me then that he was some sort of unfeeling psychopath.

    Also, the cast for this movie is odd and ill fitting. Green Lantern II seems like a sane idea compared to this .

  • PM | August 3, 2011 3:56 AMReply

    I thought Fishburne WAS white. My bad.

  • BuntyHoven | August 3, 2011 3:28 AMReply

    It's good casting. Although I think you're making it more "controversial" than it really is. I haven't seen a single person make any mention of race - most people seem to agree that he's a good choice for the role. But your article is sort of a pre-emptive strike against a supposed backlash that I don't think has happened. Even your latest Twitter update - "F*ck the haters" - where are these haters? I think by reporting it as if it's a majorly controversial piece of casting is only going to shift the story away from the actual news.

  • Gabe Toro | August 3, 2011 3:07 AMReply

    Did someone just mention "spitting on the religion" of FUCKING NORSE GODS?

  • JP | August 3, 2011 1:56 AMReply

    As great as this cast is, the movie will have one massive problem in my mind...Zack fucking Snyder is directing. The Parade of Insinuated Rapes that was Suckerpunch was the single most unpleasant experience I've had in the past year. Plus, aside from all his directorial issues, that script was fucking terrible. The closing voiceover alone made everyone in the theater crack up laughing.

    This cast is admittedly great, Nolan is great, but they have an awful director with an inflated sense of self worth who is responsible for ONE half-good movie in his career.

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