Russell Crowe Joining Superman?

He's in talks to play Jor-El

Given that no less an icon than Marlon Brando played Superman’s father Jo-El in Richard Donner’s 1978 film, it was somewhat predictable that Zack Snyder and the rest of the Man of Steel team would be looking for a big, famous name to take the role in the new reboot. Well, now they think they've found their man in Russell Crowe.

The Australian actor – last seen in The Next Three Days – will play hero Henry Cavill’s biological dad, the man who saves his infant son from the destruction of their home planet of Krypton and sends him off to Earth.

There’s no word yet on how much screen time Crowe will have as the character (come on – Chris Nolan is producing the thing, of course this sort of detail hasn’t leaked yet), but Brando was effectively a glorified cameo. Wonder if Crowe will try to get as much money as ol’ Marlon did for his brief appearance…

It’s an interesting move for the man, since it’s much more the sort of role you’d expect an older character actor to take. But Variety also mentions that Sean Penn and Clive Owen were also considered, so it seems they’re after someone a little more sprightly this time.

Crowe will join a cast that includes Cavill, Amy Adams, Kevin Costner, Diane Lane and Michael Shannon. Snyder is set to shoot next month with a release date roughly set for late 2012.