German actress to play Faora in Warner Bros.' 'Man of Steel'

EXCLUSIVE: German actress Antje Traue has been cast as Superman villainess Faora in Warner Bros./Legendary Pictures’ “Man of Steel.”

Henry Cavill stars as the titular superhero, while other confirmed cast members include Amy Adams as Lois Lane and Michael Shannon as General Zod, as well as Kevin Costner and Diane Lane as Jonathan and Martha Kent.

There are multiple Faoras in the Superman universe, so it remains unclear which one Traue has been tapped to play. The first Faora, Faora Hu-Ul, was introduced in Action Comics #471 as a beautiful Kryptonian woman with an intense unexplained hatred for all men. She was an expert at the Kryptonian martial art of Horo-Kanu, which utilizes pressure points on the Kryptonian body and made her a dangerous foe for Superman to fight in hand-to-hand combat. In fact, he was forced to flee from their first encounter.

That said, it’s more likely that Traue will be playing the version of Faora that debuted in Action Comics #779 as a Pokolistanian aide of General Zod. That character was an orphan metahuman with the ability to disrupt molecular bonds, which allowed her to create a mutagenic virus that served as the linchpin of Zod’s plan.

In pop culture, the female Kryptonian named Ursa in “Superman” and “Superman II” is believed to be based on Faora, who appeared on the eighth season of “Smallville” as the wife of General Zod.

Zack Snyder is directing “Man of Steel” from a screenplay by David S. Goyer, based on a story by Nolan and Goyer. Christopher Nolan is producing alongside Charles Roven, Emma Thomas and Deborah Snyder, while Legendary topper Thomas Tull is exec producing with Lloyd Phillips.

Production is scheduled to start this summer in Chicago, with a release planned for December 2012.

Traue was last seen playing the female lead alongside Dennis Quaid and Ben Foster in Overture Films’ “Pandorum.” Thesp recently wrapped Renny Harlin’s war drama “5 Days of August,” which stars Val Kilmer, Andy Garcia and Heather Graham.

Traue is repped stateside by Greene & Associates Talent Agency, and by Troika and Spielkind overseas.

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