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Jesse Eisenberg (not Heisenberg) will play Lex Luthor

First Batfleck, now this?


Aja Romano


Posted on Jan 31, 2014   Updated on May 31, 2021, 7:41 pm CDT

Is Warner Bros.’ upcoming Superman-Batman film just a massive social experiment at this point? 

First, the studio tagged nice guy Ben Affleck to play Batman, sparking a widespread Internet cry of outrage. Now, ignoring the clear Internet favorite for the role of Lex Luthor, the studio has passed over Breaking Bads Bryan Cranston and offered the role to… Jesse Eisenberg.

Yes, the kid from The Social Network.

The moment Variety broke the news, the Internet uttered a collective “Wut,” followed by a collective “The casting director clearly misheard ‘Get me Heisenberg!’”—referencing, of course, Cranston’s bald, badass antihero on Breaking Bad.

We also got some pretty great reaction GIFs out of it:

GIF via wderekr/Tumblr


GIF via Reddit


GIF via ihaveabeard/Tumblr


As a bonus bit of WTFery, Jeremy Irons, whose long, hammy career has left him far more well-equipped to play balding sociopaths than Eisenberg’s, has been cast as the butler, Alfred. Talk about a Reversal of Fortune. Yet more “Wut”s ensued from the Internet:

Photo via andersonvision/Tumblr

But of course, everyone’s a critic:


— Every Tweet Ever (@EveryTweet_Ever) January 31, 2014

Apart from the Internet’s general agreement that Cranston should have gotten the part, most people seemed to feel that the sandy-haired, affable Eisenberg was too young and good-natured for the role:

Screengrab via danhacker/Tumblr

Yet plenty of people pointed out that Eisenberg’s Oscar-nominated turn as Mark Zuckerberg in The Social Network has plenty of Luthor-like moments:

The biggest question for those who are on board with the casting is whether or not Eisenberg will go bald for this performance:

Photo via Reddit

But hairless or ’fro-filled, it looks like we’re in for quite the intel-Lex-ual ride.

Screengrab via YouTube

And, let’s face it, even if your fears about what terrible evils Zack Snyder’s turn of the helm of this superhero franchise hath wrought prove to be true, they’re still not nearly as bad as, well, the entire history of the Batman franchise.

Photo via WEBN-TV/Flickr

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*First Published: Jan 31, 2014, 4:46 pm CST