‘Batman v Superman’: Jesse Eisenberg on His “Modern”, “Multifaceted” Lex Luthor

     February 15, 2016


It’s just a little over a month until Warner Bros.’ Batman v Superman kicks off a new era for the DC cinematic universe. In the upcoming films, we’ll see the title heroes in a whole new light, but we’ll also get a very unique look at the villainous Lex Luthor, if Jesse Eisenberg has anything to say about it. While Gene Hackman, Kevin Spacey, and Michael Rosenbaum have left their mark on the comic book super-genius, Eisenberg aims to bring Luthor into the modern cinematic era.

In a chat with Playboy, Eisenberg (as himself, not his character, for once) talked about what made his version of Luthor different, how he approached the role, and the character’s skewed moral outlook. He also talks about going up against the likes of Batman and Superman, as embodied by Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill. Personally, I’m not sure how Eisenberg’s full performance is going to play out on the big screen, but I’m not a fan of the short snippets we’ve seen so far. Maybe my opinion will change once Batman v Superman hits theaters on March 25th.


Image via Warner Bros.

Here’s what Eisenberg had to say about the modern version of Lex Luthor seen in Batman v Superman:

“The character is in line with what audiences want to see now, which is a more modern, psychologically realistic concept of Lex Luthor. His motivations are multifaceted; he has a way of using language that’s specific to the way his mind works; he struggles with interesting philosophical dilemmas like that of the individual having too much power, even if that individual is using that power for good. For instance, Superman has so far been using his powers to do some good, but is it safe to have someone like that walking the streets? It’s great that all of this happens in the context of a very exciting superhero movie.”


Image via Warne Bros.

That particular dilemma is the same one that Affleck’s Bruce Wayne struggles with, though it’s clear that Wayne and Luthor come to a very different conclusion on how to deal with Superman. Speaking of the title heroes, here’s how Eisenberg described his interaction with them, both on camera and off:

“They’re both very smart, funny people. They were wonderful to work with because we were all sort of adjusting things to make the scenes as good as they could be. Henry has already played Superman in another movie so he has such a strong idea of his character. That was fun for me because I could play with that. Ben Affleck is also very sharp. Doing this was a lot of fun because the three of us like to improvise, changing dialogue and all. But it was also strange for me: I have a lot of respect for both of them and yet my character mocks them both a lot in the movie. But that was just the nature of the thing.”

If you’re interested on more from Eisenberg about his “very theatrical and yet authentic” take on Luthor, or what makes him think that this “incarnation of the character is drawn so differently”, be sure to head over to Playboy for the full interview.


Image via Warner Bros.

For more on Batman v Superman, take a look at some of our recent coverage below:


Image via Warner Bros.

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