Who’ll play Lex Luthor in the next Man of Steel movie?

Let’s be clear — we don’t even know yet for sure that Lex Luthor will be in the next Man of Steel movie. And if he is, we certainly have no idea that he’ll be a major character or one of those cameos that only means he’ll show up more in the third (because there will definitely be a third), but just for fun, let’s assume Lex Luthor will both appear and play a major role in Man of Steel 2. Who gets the part?

Names are being floated, Warner’s keeping its mouth shut, but already the world is wondering who’ll be Lex Luthor. So far two names have made their way out as major contenders according to IGN. Here are the pros and cons for each:

Candidate #1: Bryan Cranston

bryan cranston

PROS: It’s hard to find someone whose career is hotter at this point than Bryan Cranston, who has delivered probably the best television performance in a decade as Walter White on AMC’s Breaking Bad. He’s got genuine star power, and he can bring a darker edge to the Luthor character than many actors could. If nothing else, we know the one-time dad on Malcolm in the Middle can do maniacal — also bald! — and with Breaking Bad finishing up its final season, he’ll be free to work.

CONS: He’s never had a role so big, so although his career spans decades, he’s still relatively untested on a blockbuster scale. A lot depends on how the character is written, but if they want to go dark, Cranston might be their man.

Candidate #2: Mark Strong

mark strong

PROS: He’s bald. He was Sinestro in Green Lantern and played shady types in any number of blockbusters, be it Kick-Ass or Sherlock Holmes. His geek and film credentials are both in good order. He’s less identifiable than Bryan Cranston (who you immediately look at and see his Breaking Bad character), and so might be an easier fit into the mantle of Luthor.

CONS: Who? Strong, though he’s had a career to envy, doesn’t have nearly the pull of Cranston and even if he can do the part, the question remains if he can do it with the kind of gravity that another candidate might bring.

What We Do Know

No matter who gets the Lex Luthor role, they’re going to have to stand up to BOTH Superman and Batman. More on this one as it develops.

Is it 2015 yet?

Is it 2015 yet?