Michael Rosenbaum Did Ask James Gunn about Playing Lex Luthor in the DCU: “Why Am I Not in the Movie Somehow?”

Michael Rosenbaum on ‘Smallville Sequel Show It Has to Be the Right Time

Lex Luthor is one of Superman’s most iconic and menacing villains, frequently adapted in both animation and live-action, with nearly as many actors portraying him as there are for the Man of Steel.

In the upcoming Superman reboot by James Gunn, Nicholas Hoult has been cast as Lex Luthor. This choice surprised fans, given Gunn’s close friendship with Michael Rosenbaum, widely regarded as one of the best live-action portrayals of Lex Luthor.

At a recent Nashville Comicon 2024 panel, Michael Rosenbaum revealed to ComicBook that he did ask James Gunn why he wasn’t included in the upcoming movie. Despite this, Rosenbaum seems to hold no hard feelings about the decision.

I’m always up for a challenge. I’m always up for fun. Whatever comes to me, I look at it, and if it’s not too silly, or if it makes me laugh, or I think I could do a really good job or I think I can make an impression, I’ll do it. So I’m at that point in my career where I just want to do things that I love, that I want to do. I asked him, ‘Why am I not in Superman ? Why am I not in the movie somehow?’ It was fine, though. I wish him all the happiness. He deserves all the success he has. He’s enormously talented. When it’s the right thing, he’ll ask me. Or he won’t. And that’s aside from friendship. When your friends go off and do big things, you say, ‘Hey, they know I’m here. They know my number.’ And you just hope for the best.

Casting a younger actor for Luthor made sense, given Gunn’s decision to recast Cavill and opt for a younger version of Superman. Additionally, Rosenbaum is focused on the Smallville sequel, which he recently confirmed is in development.

All I could share is that it’s a great idea. We have Al and Miles, the creators of Smallville backing us up. When it’s the right time, we’d like to go and do this; pitch to Warner Bros. It has to be the right time, and right now is not the right time. We had the strike, we had a change of executives at DC — one being one of my best friends in the world, James Gunn.

Wouldn’t it be fantastic to see Rosenbaum reprise his role as Luthor? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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