Bryan Cranston or Mark Strong: Who’s The Better Lex Luthor?

by Ryan Rigley

Since the release of Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel,” vigilant fans have been on the lookout for any hints as to what might be popping up in the upcoming “Superman vs. Batman” movie. In addition to a Wayne Enterprises satellite that makes a very brief appearance in the third act, “Man of Steel” viewers were also quick to point out the Lexcorp building and a Lexcorp truck displayed quite prominently during the last battle.

Could this mean that Batman and Superman will be teaming up to take down the bald megalomaniac known as Lex Luthor? We’d sure like to think so. However, we here at MTV Splash Page aren’t the only ones discussing the possibility of Lex’s big screen return. In fact, two big name actors are already competing for the role: Bryan Cranston, from “Breaking Bad,” and Mark Strong, from “Low Winter Sun.”

Bryan Cranston
“I like Lex Luthor,” Cranston states in a recent interview with Metro. “I think he’s misunderstood. He’s a loveable, sweet man.” Clearly, the actor-turned-director has a great interest in playing the character. But does he have what it takes? As any fan of “Breaking Bad” could tell you—yes. Absolutely. What Cranston may lack in “Superman” knowledge—I mean, who says Lex Luthor is ’loveable’?—could be easily made up with his uncanny ability to portray a diabolical drug-pushing genius standing on the edge of insanity.

As far as comic book movie experience goes, Cranston has played both a young Jim Gordon in the animated “Batman: Year One,” and Colonel Powell in Disney’s “John Carter” adaptation. Although he’s never been cast as a supervillain, per se, Cranston’s Walter White has devolved into something much worse throughout the course of the critically-acclaimed “Breaking Bad.”

Mark Strong
“All I can say is… watch this space,” Strong teases in an interview with Digital Spy regarding the rumors of him playing Luthor. According to the rumors, he’s at the very least in the running for the part. Often cast as cold, calculating antagonists, Mark Strong is certainly no stranger to comic book movie villains. He’s played Frank D’Amico in “Kick-Ass,” Sinestro in “Green Lantern,” and Matai Shang in Disney’s “John Carter.”

There’s no question that Strong has both the look and the qualifications for the role—not to mention the fact that each one of his villains are vastly different from the next. If anything, Strong would certainly bring something quite unique to the table when it comes to Lex Luthor.

The Verdict
While both actors possess an acting prowess capable of taking on a role as big as Luthor, there can only be one power-mad, Superman-hating egotist. There’s no denying that Cranston and Strong have a lot in common, whether it’s their respective original AMC series or the fact that they were both in “John Carter.”

Strong obviously has more experience playing comic book movie antagonists, let alone antagonists in general. However, with Bryan Cranston’s Emmy-award winning portrayal of Walter White on “Breaking Bad,” we think it’s only fair to give the one-time dad from “Malcolm in the Middle” a shot at taking down Superman. If he could take a family-oriented chemistry teacher and do a complete turnaround with that character, just think about what Cranston could do with a man who’s only ever been concerned with himself—a true villain from day one. Bryan Cranston’s got our vote, Zack Snyder, and we’re sticking to it!

Who do you think would make the better Lex Luthor? Let us know in the comments below or hit us up on Twitter!