The last full trailer for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice gave us a better look at how Jesse Eisenberg was going to play the iconic villain, Lex Luthor… and people were not happy with it. It’s an extreme departure from the stoic, calculating, and suave man that we’re used to, instead getting a character that was just a little bit over-the-top. Yes, I’m purposely understating the facts here. Personally, I love his version of Lex. He’s psychopathic and impish. He reminds of an even more demented Willy Wonka and I can’t wait to see more of him.
Over the last few months, WB’s viral marketing campaign focused heavily on Luthor and LexCorp being featured in magazines as if he’s a real person. That seems to be their focus. WB is really pushing to convince us that this Luthor can exist in the real world. They are backed up by comments from the cast and crew.
Recently, Luthor did an interview with Wired that heavily focused on LexCorp as well. One piece of news here is that the Wired interview received a print edition on which Luthor makes the cover.
Aside from Luthenberg’s Vogue cover, it looks like the actor managed to give another interview with the Los Angeles Tmes.
The massive deviation from the classic Luthor also seems to be a topic in this interview. Eisenberg seems to cherish that opportunity to be a different Luthor.
“When you’re doing a movie like this and playing a character that’s already been played, the further away it is from those previous incarnations the better. Because chances are, especially with a guy like Gene Hackman or Kevin Spacey, you’re not going to get favorably compared.”
A couple weeks ago, Cavill also commented about the difference between his Clark Kent from Christopher Reeves. It seems that everybody involved in this is totally conscious of the fact that people will be scrutinizing them and comparing them to previous incarnations.
Of the character, Eisenberg repeats that the character is extremely tragic, which is what drew him into the role.
“The character has a core of reality. [Luthor] has a back story that’s tragic and an emotional inner life that’s authentic. That’s in the movie. It was my interest in playing the character with a real emotional core, and this writer, Chris Terrio’s interest in creating a character that seemed viable in reality.”
Of the interviews he’s given and the faux interviews with Luthor, the most recurring theme here in most of the marketing is that they want this Luthor to be seen as realistic. A person who can exist in our reality.
Luthor goes on to explain how his personality affects his vendetta with Supes, “He is a narcissist of the first order but complicated in that way as well in that he is terribly troubled and competitive and vengeful. He looks at Superman not as somebody to destroy but as genuine threat to humanity.”
Director Zack Snyder also had a few choice quotes regarding Jesse. It was revealed that Jesses wasn’t originally meant to play Lex Luthor and was offered another character before Snyder changed his mind. Apparently, the “complete opposite” of Luthor.
And another recurring theme that seems to appear in most interviews with Eisenberg is that Luthor is scary. I can’t really describe how, for obvious reasons. Therefore, I will let Snyder explain:
“Once you kind of start digging into Lex, it’s a bit of a scary thing to be that guy. I don’t think he just goes ‘Oh, I’ll just be that guy and then when I go home I’m not him.’ I think the thing with Jesse is he wasn’t immune to the reality of playing a super-scary character.”
And lastly, because I wanted to keep you waiting, the reporter asked him about his hair. Of the marketing material that we’ve seen, Luthor will sport flowing locks as well as a shiny dome, which indicates that at some point in the movie, Luthor will lose his hair. Though Eisenberg refused to reveal any detail of it, he did say, “When you see the movie, you’ll see. It’s the greatest scene that I’ve ever gotten to take part in — it accounts for the change in hair.”
Well, that’s something to think about.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice hits theatres on March 25th, 2016.