Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Venice Review: Cary Joji Fukunaga's 'Beasts Of No Nation' Starring Idris Elba Venice Review: Cary Joji Fukunaga's 'Beasts Of No Nation' Starring Idris Elba Review: Netflix's 'Narcos' Starring Wagner Moura And Boyd Holbrook Review: Netflix's 'Narcos' Starring Wagner Moura And Boyd Holbrook Joaquin Phoenix Says He Doesn’t Think Making A Blockbuster Would Be "Fulfilling," Calls Chris Pine "F*cking Genius" Joaquin Phoenix Says He Doesn’t Think Making A Blockbuster Would Be "Fulfilling," Calls Chris Pine "F*cking Genius" Watch: Chloe Moretz Fights The Others In First Trailer For 'The 5th Wave' Watch: Chloe Moretz Fights The Others In First Trailer For 'The 5th Wave' James Bond Author Says Idris Elba Is "Too Street" To Play 007, And Bond Is "Weak" In 'Skyfall' James Bond Author Says Idris Elba Is "Too Street" To Play 007, And Bond Is "Weak" In 'Skyfall' Cary Fukunaga Says He "Wasn't Involved" With 'True Detective' Season 2, Explains His Departure From 'It' Cary Fukunaga Says He "Wasn't Involved" With 'True Detective' Season 2, Explains His Departure From 'It' Watch: Eddie Redmayne Is 'The Danish Girl' In First Trailer For Tom Hooper's Transgender Drama Watch: Eddie Redmayne Is 'The Danish Girl' In First Trailer For Tom Hooper's Transgender Drama Andrew Garfield Talks “The Pressure To Get It Right” for ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ Films & If He'll Do Another Franchise Andrew Garfield Talks “The Pressure To Get It Right” for ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ Films & If He'll Do Another Franchise Fall 2015 TV Preview: Our 25 Most Anticipated Shows Fall 2015 TV Preview: Our 25 Most Anticipated Shows Make It Happen Weinsteins: David Robert Mitchell Wants To Have Beer With Quentin Tarantino And Talk 'It Follows' Make It Happen Weinsteins: David Robert Mitchell Wants To Have Beer With Quentin Tarantino And Talk 'It Follows' On The Rise 2015: 15 Cinematographers To Watch On The Rise 2015: 15 Cinematographers To Watch Ridley Scott Says 'Prometheus 2' Is His Next Film Ridley Scott Says 'Prometheus 2' Is His Next Film 'Batman v Superman' And Why Early Screening Reports Need To Be Taken With A Grain Of Kryptonite 'Batman v Superman' And Why Early Screening Reports Need To Be Taken With A Grain Of Kryptonite Looks Like That Black-And-White Version Of 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Isn't Getting A Blu-Ray Release After All Looks Like That Black-And-White Version Of 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Isn't Getting A Blu-Ray Release After All The 20 Best Documentaries Of 2015 So Far The 20 Best Documentaries Of 2015 So Far The 25 Best Sci-Fi Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Sci-Fi Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far 17 Copycat Films Spawned From Quentin Tarantino's 'Pulp Fiction' 17 Copycat Films Spawned From Quentin Tarantino's 'Pulp Fiction'

Rumor: Mark Strong & Bryan Cranston In The Mix For Lex Luthor In 'Superman Vs. Batman'

Photo of Oliver Lyttelton By Oliver Lyttelton | The Playlist August 9, 2013 at 9:59AM

11
Cranston, Strong, Superman And Batman rumors

With the dust settled on "Man Of Steel" (an awful lot of dust, given how much of Metropolis was totaled by film's end) it's fair to call it a successful reboot of the Superman franchise. Sure, it divided fans and critics, and didn't hit the giddy billion-dollar heights of the "Dark Knight" films (yet), but $650 million and counting isn't anything to be sniffed at for a franchise starter, and Warner Bros made clear that they're pushing forward at Comic-Con by bringing out Zack Snyder to announce that he'd be returning to direct the film's sequel, which would feature Henry Cavill's Kal-El face off against a new iteration of Batman.

With the film aiming for a 2015 release, things are moving swiftly on the project, so it's no surprise that we're already hearing casting rumors, with names like Ryan Gosling and Josh Brolin cropping up for the Caped Crusader last weekend. And now, the last couple of days have brought some hints at two actors who might follow in the footsteps of Gene Hackman and Kevin Spacey to play Superman's greatest nemesis, Lex Luthor, in the project.

First up, perennial movie villain Mark Strong (who's been the bad guy in "Sherlock Holmes," "John Carter," "Robin Hood" and "Kick Ass" among others) has apparently had his name out there in the ether for the part for a while, and when Digital Spy put the possibility to him, the actor (whose AMC series "Low Winter Sun" begins airing this Sunday, and who gives an excellent performance in "Blood," which is in limited release this weekend) told the site "All I can say is... watch this space," which hardly qualifies as a denial, and certainly seems to suggest that he's at least in the running.

But there may be someone else with a head start on the role, as Latino Review's scoopmeister El Mayimbe has been dropping numerous hints on Twitter that Strong's AMC colleague Bryan Cranston may be up for the gig. The "Breaking Bad" actor's schedule is clearing up now that the series has wrapped (its final eight episodes begin airing Sunday), and the actor has a good relationship with Warners, having featured in "Contagion," "Rock Of Ages" and the upcoming "Godzilla" for the studio (he also voiced James Gordon in the animated "Batman: Year One" series, fact fans).

Of course, these are all unverified rumors, and things are early enough down the line that these could just be names being kicked around by Snyder & co. There's no doubt that either actor would be a good fit for the part, but given that they're among the more famous bald character actors around, there's a certain lack of imagination at work. And if you're gonna think about well-known slapheads, at least give Corey Stoll some consideration...

We probably won't get a firm answer in the immediate future, but we're also likely to know before too long: with "Batman Vs. Superman," or whatever it ends up being called, aiming for a 2015 release, filming needs to get underway early next year at the latest.

This article is related to: Bryan Cranston, Mark Strong, Batman v. Superman: Dawn Of Justice


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates