Jesse Eisenberg Was Originally Up For This Role In ‘Batman v Superman’

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This article contains major spoilers for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

We’ve known for a while now that Jesse Eisenberg originally auditioned to play another character in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, but now Entertainment Weekly has revealed that the actor was up for the role of Jimmy Olsen in the movie. While Eisenberg obviously didn’t end up playing him, the character did indeed make it into the final cut of the movie and he even shared a couple of scenes with Lois Lane.

However, he also died right in the beginning of the movie, as he was the photographer who was played by Michael Cassidy. Speaking with the magazine, director Zack Snyder explained the reasoning behind his decision to kill off the character:

“We just did it as this little aside because we had been tracking where we thought the movies were gonna go, and we don’t have room for Jimmy Olsen in our big pantheon of characters, but we can have fun with him, right?”

Snyder then went on to say that the character will have a bit more screentime in the Ultimate Edition of the movie, where he will actually reveal his identity to Lois early on during their meeting:

“He comes up to her and he goes, ‘Lois Lane, I’m Jimmy Olsen, photographer, obviously … You know, I’ve been assigned to you for this mission.’ But it turns out that Jimmy Olsen is a spook for the CIA.”

As for why Snyder wanted an actor like Eisenberg in the small role, it appears that the director wanted to add another shock factor in the movie by killing off a character who would be played by a famous actor:

“I thought, if it were Jesse Eisenberg and he got out and he goes, ‘I’m Jimmy Olsen,’ you’d be like, oh my God, we’re gonna have Jimmy Olsen in the whole movie, right?’ And then if he got shot, you’d just be like, ‘What!? You can’t do that.’”

Before Eisenberg landed the role of Luthor, many fans wanted to see Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston in the part, but was he ever even considered? Here’s what Snyder told EW about that:

“We talked about the usual suspects that you would imagine; any actor who has been bald, probably,. Bryan Cranston would have been great, right? And by the way, he’s an amazing actor. Can you imagine how different the movie would be?”

What do you guys think? Did you like Eisenberg as Lex Luthor in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice or would you have preferred to see someone like Cranston in the role? Sound-off your thoughts in the comment section below.

Source: Entertainment Weekly

Michael Bezanidis

Michael Bezanidis

Michael is the Managing Editor of Heroic Hollywood. When he's not playing video games, he's usually writing about film and television.

  • breakerbaker

    So Jimmy Olson is murdered in the opening scene and doesn’t even meet Clark Kent/Superman.

  • Worldmind

    Wow.
    “Hey guys, we don’t have room for Jimmy Olsen in our huge pantheon of characters. Let’s kill him off straight away, that’s ‘having fun’ with him right?”
    “But what about Man of Steel 2? He could be in that, a lot of fans are fond of him.”
    “No f*** it. Kill the bit**.”
    Tremendously disrespectful.

    • Worldmind

      “We talked about the usual suspects that you would imagine..”
      Would those actors appreciate being dismissed off-hand as ‘the usual suspects’? Probably not. And your first criteria for Lex Luthor is someone who’s been bald? This whole thing REEKS. I’m done. F**k you Zack Snyder and your sh*te film, the whole air around it stinks. I hope it sinks like a stone second weekend, and I hope DC/comic/movie fans eventually get the decent films they deserve.

  • UnBoxingJon

    Zack Snyder sounds like Zack Snyder’s biggest fan.

  • breakerbaker

    Honestly, I don’t know how you can call yourself a Superman fan and be okay with this. I have trouble understanding why anybody even comes away from the movie as is with a positive impression, but I’ll take their word for it that they see something where I see a mass of nothing, but to do this to one of the major characters in Superman’s circle….I just don’t get how anybody could be okay with this.

    • Foreign Geek

      I’m okay with this! You gotta remember that the superman family was created way back when…..so some of these characters either need to go away or be killed of. This is the 21st century! Jimmy Olsen should not exist or even exist as superman’s best pal. That’s a 1930’s to 1960’s concept that don’t work in the modern age. Fans should have a problem with Robin as well but he is a beloved character. I like him as a superhero too but think about a single bachelor, a rich playboy making a 10-12 yr old boy/orphan his ‘ward’. Do we even use those terms anymore? It’s kinda weird.
      If I had the power too, I would not make lois lane superman’s girlfriend or wife. I very much prefer Diana as his significant other. There’s so much that need to change about the heroes created 70-80 years ago.
      For instance, In our world today, the news paper business is pretty much dead except for a few straglers. I remember in the70s Clark and Lois were tv anchors. That’s what they should be in the comics now and in the movies.

      • breakerbaker

        I like Jimmy Olsen. He doesn’t have to be a naive/kid photographer, but there’s no reason he couldn’t exist in this world in Clark’s circle. However, I would have been all right if they chose to leave Jimmy out of it entirely. Or if they had turned the Jenny character into a kind of de facto Jimmy character who idolized Superman for saving Metropolis having come so close to being a victim herself. But bringing in Jimmy Olsen as a CIA undercover who brings a film camera to the desert and is immediately found out and executed? Why is that a good idea? The only world in which that makes sense is the world that rejects so much that makes Superman Superman, and after spending so much time defending MoS against the flood of criticism it received over the last three years, I’m at a loss. Everything about this movie says that even when those people were wrong about MoS, they were right about Snyder. He doesn’t like Superman. And the only version of Batman he likes appears to be Miller’s. Everything about this movie was a disappointment to me.

  • Son of Coul
  • Foreign Geek

    In the 21st century, there is no role or room for a Jimmy Olsen character. Superman’s pal??? Nah!

    We all know that that role belongs to the Bruce!

  • Math

    First off, I really liked the movie. You must not think too much about why they do what they do, and why they don’t simply do this instead, because you can quickly find a lot of holes in this film, but since I just went along with what was going on, I really enjoyed the ride. Clearly this film was edited way down and there’s clearly a lot of scenes that have been cut that would probably explain a lot of the weird choices that are being made in this movie. I need to see the directors cut before I can fully judge this movie, but I must say that when a director has to publicly explain a lot of the reasoning behind a lot of his choices, you probably failed to make your movie coherent. The movie should speak for itself. You shouldn’t need to go searching for explanations after you watched a film. I’m hoping the extended cut will address most of these issues, but seeing how much Zack Snyder has to explain this movie right now makes me believe that won’t even explain everything that would needed to be addressed.

    Now this Jimmy Olsen situation is a perfect example of what bothers me about the direction they are taking. In Zack Snyder’s plans for his series of movies (MoS, BvS, JL), he does not see room to put Jimmy in. But what about other movies? Are they never gonna do another Superman movie? When you try and built a new DC movie universe, isn’t the goal to be able to produce as many movies as you can? To do that, you kind of want to leave the door open so others can pick-up the ball and run with it. A lot of weird decisions have been made that shut the door on so many possible good stories. And I’m not necessarily talking about Jimmy Olsen here. You can tell a lot of good Superman stories without relying on this character, but by rushing towards Justice League, so many weird decisions have limited the possible directions they can take now.

    The first thing that kind of bothered me when they first announced this project was why were they going to an older Batman? When you cast a Batman actor who is in his 40s, you can’t expect him to play Batman for over a decade. So you immediately eliminate a lot of his early stories. Then you do things like kill off Mercy Graves and you put Lex Luther in jail in his first movie. So we will never really see movies about Lex doing shady business stuff and manipulating the public to become the president and all those stories? Feels like another wasted opportunity.

    It just feels like they are rushing through the history to get as quickly as possible to their Justice League movie, but once they get there, then what? They are painting themselves into a corner by rushing through all that. It looks a lot like the first Spider-man movie where they wanted to get Peter into College so quickly that they skipped over so many potentially great stories so they could tell that one story they wanted to tell right now.

    Because you don’t know how to use a character doesn’t mean it’s OK to kill him off so no one else can use him. This DCCU looks like it’s going to be a short ride and they will need to reboot the universe in 10 years because they’ll have rushed through it all. Thankfully they have this multiverse get out of jail free card they can use whenever they want to reboot everything, but I’m not even sure that’ll be a good idea. Marvel took 12 movies to get where they are at today, so they had time to fully flesh out their universe and allow us to accept a concept like Civil War to exist in their movie universe. Had Civil War been their second movie, I’m not convinced people would buy into it and that’s what DC is trying to do. They are rushing and stuffing a dozen movies worth of content into a couple movies and they don’t earn the payoffs they are trying to force down our throats. Maybe BvS is brilliantly foreshadowing a lot of things and once we watch it again in context in 10 years, it’ll brilliantly fit into this bigger picture they are building, but as it stands right now on its own, it looks incomplete and a big mess.

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