×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

WB finds super nemesis

Spacey joins 'Superman' as Luthor

Kevin Spacey has been cast as the villainous Lex Luthor in director Bryan Singer’s “Superman.” The Warner Bros. tentpole will begin production at Fox Studios Sydney on March 3.

Spacey’s deal was inked as the studio is in the midst of trying to complete a deal with Kate Bosworth to play Lois Lane for the long-in-the-works feature. Bosworth played Sandra Dee to Spacey’s Bobby Darin in “Beyond the Sea,” which Spacey directed, co-wrote and produced.

Actors will join newcomer Brandon Routh, who was chosen in October to play Superman.

Tentpole pic is Warner Bros.’ second resuscitation of a DC Comics franchise. Though “Catwoman” proved to be kitty litter, WB previously re-birthed its Caped Crusader franchise and will open the Christopher Nolan-directed “Batman Returns” on June 17.

Given Routh’s neophyte stature, star-casting the villain was a priority for the studio. Singer said that when he and scribes Michael Dougherty and Dan Harris hatched the idea for the film, Spacey was always the template for Luthor.

Singer, who directed Spacey to his first Oscar in “The Usual Suspects,” was able to entice the actor by presenting a schedule that allows the thesp to live up to his primary allegiance to the London stage, where he is artistic director of the Old Vic. While Singer begins production in March, Spacey won’t join until summer.

Before he heads to Australia, Spacey will have completed three plays: “Cloaca,” which he directed; “National Anthems,” which he’ll topline starting Feb. 1; and a limited run of “The Philadelphia Story,” in which he will star beginning May 3.

“The huge attraction for me was the chance to work with Bryan again,” Spacey said. “Lex Luthor is a wonderful role.”

Singer couldn’t comment on Bosworth because the deal isn’t done.

He said he and his writers chose a track that falls somewhere between the original film and the successful series “Smallville.”

“It’s a little like ‘X-Men,’ where the mutants existed when the movie began,” Singer said. “It’s not an origin story; I didn’t want to remake what Richard Donner did so well in the original, and didn’t want to tread on the great work they’re doing on ‘Smallville.’ He’s already part of the culture; he has left the planet. This is the story of his return.”

More Film

  • Come as You Are review

    SXSW Film Review: 'Come as You Are'

    The rare remake that’s actually a slight improvement on its predecessor, Richard Wong’s “Come as You Are” translates Geoffrey Enthoven’s 2011 Belgian “Hasta la Vista” to middle America. Other changes are less substantial, but this seriocomedy has a less formulaic feel than the original while remaining a crowd-pleasing buddy pic-caper with a soft-pedaled minority empowerment [...]

  • Strange Negotiations review

    SXSW Film Review: 'Strange Negotiations'

    In a era when some mainstream entertainers have transitioned to targeting faith-based audiences, David Bazan is moving in the other direction. The gifted songwriter’s ersatz band Pedro the Lion was perhaps the most successful Christian indie rock act of its time, and the first to significantly cross over to secular fans. Then he ditched that persona (and [...]

  • Bluebird review

    SXSW Film Review: ‘Bluebird’

    As affectionate as a love letter but as substantial as an infomercial, Brian Loschiavo’s “Bluebird” may be of most interest to casual and/or newly converted country music fans who have occasionally wondered about the songwriters behind the songs. There’s a better than even-money chance that anyone who’s a loyal and longtime aficionado of the musical [...]

  • ‘Wonder Park’ Tops Studios’ TV Ad

    ‘Wonder Park’ Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending for the Fourth Week in a Row

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV advertising attention analytics company iSpot.tv, Paramount Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the fourth week in row with “Wonder Park.” Ads placed for the animated film had an estimated media value of $5.18 million through Sunday for 1,718 national [...]

  • Michael B. Jordan Jordan Vogt-Roberts

    Film News Roundup: Michael B. Jordan, Jordan Vogt-Roberts Team for Monster Movie

    In today’s film news roundup, Michael B. Jordan is producing a creature feature, billiards champ Cisero Murphy is getting a movie, the sixth Terminator movie gets a title, and Graham King receives an honor. PROJECT UNVEILED New Regency and Michael B. Jordan’s Outlier Society are partnering on an untitled monster movie from “Kong: Skull Island” [...]

  • Nicolas Cage

    Nicolas Cage to Star in Martial Arts Actioner 'Jiu Jitsu'

    Nicolas Cage will star in the martial arts actioner “Jiu Jitsu,” based on the comic book of the same name. The cast will also include Alain Moussi, who stars in the “Kickboxer” franchise. Dimitri Logothetis is producing with Martin Barab and directing from a script he wrote with Jim McGrath. Highland Film Group is handling [...]

  • Chinese success of Thai film "Bad

    Chinese, Thai Shingles Pact for Co-Production Fund at FilMart

    A deal to establish a 100 million yuan ($14.9 million) co-production fund between China and Thailand was struck at FilMart on Tuesday to help launch TV and film projects that will appeal to Chinese and Southeast Asian audience. The deal that was struck by China’s Poly Film Investment Co., TW Capital from Thailand and Thai [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content