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Jesse Eisenberg Is Lex Luthor
And Jeremy Irons is Alfred for Superman Vs. Batman

31 January 2014  |  Written by James White  |  Source: Warner Bros. (Via Businesswire)

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Bryan Cranston can stop taking the ol’ razor to his bonce, at least in fans’ minds, because Warner Bros. has decided who will play Lex Luthor in the still-untitled Superman Vs. Batman mash-up and it isn't the Man Who Was Heisenberg. It is, however, Jesse Eisenberg, with Jeremy Irons tapped to fill Michael Caine’s suit as Bruce Wayne’s butler, Alfred.

The announcement – surprising both in terms of who was eventually cast and that Warners would push the news out on a Friday – ends the months of speculation about who would play the key Superman villain. Irons, meanwhile, is an intriguing choice for Alfred, a younger man compared to an employer who Ben Affleck has said he wants to be older and wiser.

“Lex Luthor is often considered the most notorious of Superman’s rivals, his unsavoury reputation preceding him since 1940,” says director Zack Snyder in the official press release. “What’s great about Lex is that he exists beyond the confines of the stereotypical nefarious villain. He’s a complicated and sophisticated character whose intellect, wealth and prominence position him as one of the few mortals able to challenge the incredible might of Superman. Having Jesse in the role allows us to explore that interesting dynamic, and also take the character in some new and unexpected directions.”

The director adds, “As everyone knows, Alfred is Bruce Wayne’s most trusted friend, ally and mentor, a noble guardian and father figure. He is an absolutely critical element in the intricate infrastructure that allows Bruce Wayne to transform himself into Batman. It is an honour to have such an amazingly seasoned and gifted actor as Jeremy taking on the important role of the man who mentors and guides the guarded and nearly impervious façade that encapsulates Bruce Wayne.”

Snyder has shot some early footage but the majority of the film is still to be completed, headed now for a May 2016 release date after the recent shift to allow the filmmakers, which include scriptwriter David S. Goyer, the time to get everything into shape. In addition to Henry Cavill as Supes, Man Of Steel veterans Amy Adams, Diane Lane and Laurence Fishburne are all aboard, joining new arrivals Affleck as Batman and Gal Gadot as Diana Prince/Wonder Woman.

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Your Comments

The Eisenberg casting could really work or really fall flat. It could work because Eisenberg makes a good and greedy, and manipulative billionaire (Social Network, Duh). It could be bad because he is WAY TOO YOUNG to be battling Superman and Batflek. And Jeremy Irons cast as Alfred is jut insane. More

Posted by Darren47 at 18:45 on 03 February 2014 | Report This Post

The cast for this film is getting worse and i predict a huge flop for the studio............ More

Posted by Beaulieu at 07:04 on 03 February 2014 | Report This Post

L: mysterious Should have cast Heisenberg exactly is the worst comment, that I have read on multiple sites, on the news. Calling the man 'Bryan Cranston' instead of Heisenberg would have been better, but the fact that you refer to the specific role is the best example why they could never cast Cranston and why the internet would be terrible for casting decisions. Making Luthor exactly like Heisenberg in Breaking Bad would be terrible. Then everyone would suddenly call it a ripoff. More

Posted by Chris Boomen at 15:31 on 02 February 2014 | Report This Post

Steady on. Eisenberg could do a brilliant job - he can actually act and he doesn't exactly blend into the background, which you need for a villain like Luthor. I like that they're trying something different. More

Posted by ASparePocket at 11:23 on 02 February 2014 | Report This Post

eiseberg good actor irons old school great actor
This could really work well if the writers put the script right they made many silly mistakes with man of steel hope they have learned there lesson . More

Posted by mcgee at 00:38 on 02 February 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Who?
Would have preferred Bill Murray as Lex and John Cleese as Alfred, but I'm genuinely intrigued by Eisenberg and pleasantly surprised by Irons. Everything about this film really screams "could be truly inspired or truly insipid". I'm happy to wait and see. More

Posted by Pirate King at 17:42 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

Who the bloody hell is Jesse Eisenberg? And he is way too young to play Lex Luther. Why can't Kevin Spacey play him again? Or someone else but no bloody kid please. Good choice to play Alfred though. More

Posted by Thomas Odgers at 15:15 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

Should have cast Heisenberg More

Posted by mysterious at 14:46 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

RE: bullshit
Awesome. I approve! More

Posted by Chris Boomen at 14:07 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

I have truthfully lost all hope for this now with eisenberg on board More

Posted by josh the movie leg at 10:16 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

RE: Don't Care anymore...
More concerned over the director than the casting. Seriously, the second half of Man of Steel was so boring. More

Posted by Chronicle at 10:09 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

Don't Care anymore...
Am bored to death with it all - Think it says it all with the amount of coverage Empire has Given to XMEN 7 of the dire state Hollywood is in...I couldn't care less about it anymore... More

Posted by Alex M... at 09:37 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

Yep, really happy with both of these.
Apart from Gadot, this is shaping up nicely. Glad they moved the release date to allow for quality, and frankly, less competition. More

Posted by coomi77 at 09:30 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

Batbore v Superlame
Does anyone really care about the casting anymore. Sorry to say it but I really cant see this movie working. More

Posted by darthmhall101 at 03:02 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

Would've liked Bryan Cranston...
... but I think this adds an interesting dynamic. Mark Zuckerberg vs Superman. More

Posted by d0m_l at 00:33 on 01 February 2014 | Report This Post

That is all. More

Posted by 7eke at 22:50 on 31 January 2014 | Report This Post

I hate the Eisenberg casting. He just totally conforms to that Hollywood stereotype which I particularly dislike right now: that you have to talk fast to appear smart. Bullshit! Any bets that Luthor's intellect will be displayed by Eisenberg babbling incessantly with apparently 'smart' dialogue? I can only hope that I am pleasantly surprised - like Heath Ledger's Joker. More

Posted by sifter132 at 22:37 on 31 January 2014 | Report This Post

First its Batfleck, then its Lutherberg More

Posted by Darren47 at 22:20 on 31 January 2014 | Report This Post

Was really confused about this until I read xyznomorpher comments. Good call and makes me a feel a little big better. However Jeremy Irons! His performances since his Oscar are awful. Dungeons & Dragons. Michael Caine has been the best. A tough act to follow. More

Posted by cra1gs at 20:02 on 31 January 2014 | Report This Post

You know, I was initially as flabbergasted as anyone, but the more I think about it, this actually makes sense! Eisenberg has practically made his career from playing incredibly smart but also slimy, nasty and self-centered individuals (The Social Network, Now You See Me), and given that he is supposed to be a sort of parallel to Superman, him being only 31 completely fits. More

Posted by xzynomorpher at 19:07 on 31 January 2014 | Report This Post

Wow! Really interesting casting. This could all work. More

Posted by Golden God at 18:30 on 31 January 2014 | Report This Post

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