Michael Rosenbaum Reveals Why He’s Not In James Gunn’s ‘Superman’

Where's Michael Rosenbaum, Gunn!?

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Could Michael Rosenbaum have returned to the world of Superman in the DC Universe? The Lex Luthor actor speaks on his absence from James Gunn’s DCU reboot.

Fans often hail Smallville star Michael Rosenbaum as the best Lex Luthor to ever grace live-action. Given that Rosenbaum has a close relationship with James Gunn, who’s currently directing the upcoming Superman reboot, the internet has expected the actor to at least get a cameo in the project.

However, it seems Michael Rosenbaum won’t be making his return to the DC Universe just yet. When speaking on the idea that he could appear in Superman, he admitted that he looks at everything that comes across his desk. While he isn’t in the movie, Rosenbaum gives James Gunn his full support with the reboot.

“Whatever comes to me, I look at it, and if it’s not too silly, or if it makes me laugh, or I think I could do a really good job or I think I can make an impression, I’ll do it,” Rosenbaum explained during a recent panel at Nashville ComicCon. “So I’m at that point in my career where I just want to do things that I love, that I want to do.”

“I’d obviously love to work with my buddy James again. I asked him, ‘Why am I not in Superman? Why am I not in the movie somehow?’ It was fine, though. I wish him all the happiness. He deserves all the success he has. He’s enormously talented. When it’s the right thing, he’ll ask me. Or he won’t.”

“And that’s aside from friendship. When your friends go off and do big things, you say, ‘Hey, they know I’m here. They know my number.’ And you just hope for the best.”

Michael Rosenbaum’s Influence On Superman

While Michael Rosenbaum himself won’t be appearing in James Gunn’s reboot, his influence will certainly be felt. The mantle of Lex Luthor will be taken up by Nicholas Hoult in the new DC Universe. When the two actors spoke on Rosenbaum’s Inside of You podcast, Hoult admitted that he’s always loved Rosenbaum’s take on the character in Smallville.

“I think the first-ever Lex I saw was you. Smallville was on…I was 11, 12, I guess,” Hoult explained. “That was the show I would watch and see my first iterations of Superman and Lex in all those stories. Since, I’ve seen Richard Donner’s movies and all the other ones and performances.”

“I love [your performance as Lex]. It’s the best, yeah,” he continued. “You did inhabit him with such depth and charm. That ability to switch which makes him dangerous and formidable and a great opponent. I just love what you did.”

Given how much Michael Rosenbaum’s performance as Lex Luthor has influenced perceptions of the character over the past two decades, it’s no shock that Nicholas Hoult would have high praise for him. So while Rosenbaum himself won’t be on the set of James Gunn’s reboot, fans can rest assured his guiding hand will be felt in Superman.

Superman is currently scheduled to hit theaters on July 11, 2025. Stay tuned for the latest news regarding the future of the DC Universe and make sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more content!

Anthony Singletary

Anthony Singletary

Anthony has always had a love for stories. An aspiring screenwriter and video editor, he takes pride in connecting fans with the latest heroic news!