The biggest news to hit Hollywood this weekend — and really the entire entertainment world for that matter — was word that Oscar winner Ben Affleck was cast as the next Batman. Fans immediately discounted his two Academy Award wins and the three very solid independent features he put together and reverted Affleck back to his unloved Daredevil days, and internet rioting ensued.
But fans are going to have to live with a life that involves Ben Affleck as Batman and with two major roles filled for 2015’s Batman vs. Superman, the question is can the movie be saved (assuming that it indeed needs saving at this point).
While it’s far too early to judge the film based on one casting controversy, fans are looking for a reason to feel the film will be alright even with Affleck as Batman. One way that could happen is casting a strong actor in a villain role and rumors that Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston could be headed to Metropolis are being leaned on more than ever.
As it has been for months now, all signs are pointing to Cranston being cast as Lex Luthor, the main antagonist in the Superman universe. Cranston is finishing up his run on Breaking Bad with the final episode of the series already in the can, and he’s begun a film career that doesn’t show any signs of slowing.
But while Cranston seems to be the frontrunner at this point to play Luthor, let’s not forget how violently the tide shifted when it came to actors being considered as the next Batman. Fans were still juggling names like Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling and Orlando Bloom before Ben Affleck was dropped on them like a Wile E. Coyote anvil.
Should Cranston be cast as Luthor though, it could be something that calms the masses. Cranston is one of the most beloved actors to fanboys as his run on Breaking Bad has made him somewhat of an icon. That skill and recognition would help water down some of the hate being directed at Affleck for doing nothing more than accepting the role of a lifetime.
With Batman cast, it’s only a matter of time before Luthor is cast and Cranston could help even things out with fans. But the more his name is brought up without actually being cast, the more fans should worry that Zack Snyder will muck up another key casting decision for Batman vs. Superman.