As far as Jesse Eisenberg is concerned, next spring, in a movie called Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, he will be portraying a man named Lex Luthor. In his mind, “Lex Luthor” is a person, distinguishable from “Superman super-villain Lex Luthor”. Eisenberg explained to MTV how his own personal expectations for his performance of Luthor may differ from fans’ expectations, because he’s not portraying a “comic book character”, he’s portraying a deeply troubled and complex man.
“The expectations that I have are never the same expectations that an audience has,”
“I don’t have expectations for myself to adhere to a comic book character, but a lot of people are interested in how I would coincide with the comic book character. But it couldn’t be farther from my mind, because I’m just playing a role… It’s a really great character that’s written by this guy, Chris Terrio, he’s a phenomenal writer… He loves my character in the same way I love my character. He put a lot of work into it. It’s a great character, there’s an emotional core to the character. It’s not this silly, villainous character. This is a real depiction of a person who thinks these things. So the challenge is to make it seem real.”
When asked if his Luthor will be akin to Gene Hackman’s Luthor from the 1978 Richard Donner film, Eisenberg replied:
“No, that’s an entirely different thing,”
“Also the tone of that movie is so different, that movie wouldn’t be made that way now. The way we expect movies to be now, which is for the best probably, we expect there to be some kind of psychological accuracy. That the person is coming from a place that’s probably diagnosable in some ways. This is not [a winking, knowing movie], this is a real depiction of a person who thinks these things.”
So it seems although Eisenberg isn’t doing any comic book related research for this role, he’s certainly getting into his character’s head. It’s clear he really intends to inhabit this body and see what makes this guy tick. Being on such a personal level with this role, it’s no wonder that he had this to say in January on reprising the part:
“I would love to. It’s a great group and director, and the most ideal character to play.”
Rumors are already spreading that Eisenberg will pop up in David Ayer’s Suicide Squad, and after hearing how devoted he is to his character, his performance will surely be powerful and compelling to watch. Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice hits theaters March 25, 2016.