The casting of Jesse Eisenberg as Superman’s arch nemesis Lex Luthor in March 25th’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, was met with extreme criticism and backlash. Many believe the actor doesn’t fit the role in any way, shape or form. The biggest complaint on the internet is that he doesn’t look the part. When people think of Lex they think of actors like Kevin Spacey and Gene Hackman – both actors who have portrayed the supervillian with a commanding presence in the past. Still, Jesse’s version of the character seems to be taking a different direction than previous iterations. He’s young, sarcastic, and rich. Some see this Lex as DC’s Mark Zuckerbeg who, incidentally, Eisenberg portrayed in 2010’s The Social Network. Director Zack Snyder and Jesse sat down with Empire to discuss Lex’s psychology in the film and the concerns fans have about him being too much like Zuckerberg.
“It was written in a way I would say dovetails with my skills,” Jesse says. “It was written with a real psychlogical underpinning, it was written with a kind of humor that I knew I could do. And with a dramatic intensity that I enjoy.”
When asked about the parallels between Zuckerberg and his portrayal of Lex, the actor had this to say:
“If there are some surface similarities to another role, an audience will tend to see that. An actor wont. Lex feels like a totally new and unusual person.”
The director of Batman v Superman himself, Zack Snyder also had his chance to weigh in on the fan concern.
“Just from a pop-cultural viewpoint you can’t pretend the movie doesn’t exist. Because he has played Mark Zuckerberg, Jesse represents a very contemporary sort of business model. In the sort of post-dotcom world where fortunes can be made from your basement, it is not hard to image Jesse-as-Lex being as powerful as he is.”
The actor then begins to dive deeper into his understanding of Lex an what makes him such a powerful and dangerous villain.
He uses wordplay and very clever allusions to other stories and myths, but it never compromises what is scary about him… He is the guy who won’t sleep to get something done. What I think, makes the story relevant is this questioning of the value of this kind of power in the real world. so my character who has what we would think of as modern financial success, is threatened by this guy who has power in a supernatural way. Superman is an existential threat to my character.”
It definitely as if Snyder and Eisenberg are ushering this version of Lex into the current world. I’m expecting big things from Jesse as Lex when Batman v Superman releases on March 25th, 2016. Less than two months everyone!
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice: Following his titanic struggle against General Zod, Metropolis has been razed to the ground and Superman is the most controversial figure in the world. While for many he is still an emblem of hope, a growing number of people consider him a threat to humanity, seeking justice for the chaos he has brought to Earth. As far as Bruce Wayne is concerned, Superman is clearly a danger to society. He fears for the future of the world with such a reckless power left ungoverned, and so he dons his mask and cape to right Superman’s wrongs. The rivalry between them is furious, fuelled by bitterness and vengeance, and nothing can dissuade them from waging this war. However, a dark new threat arises in the form of a third man: one who has a power greater than either of them to endanger the world and cause total destruction.
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