ByKit Simpson Browne, writer at
Staff Writer, Superheroes, Star Wars and such. Bad jokes aplenty. Can be gently prodded on Twitter at @kitsb1
Kit Simpson Browne

In the current movie climate, hardly a week goes by where Benedict Cumberbatch isn't linked to a major role in a major movie, usually one adapted from some sort of major geeky source material. Maybe it's because the man - both Sherlock, Khan and Smaug, remember - has some serious geek cred. Maybe it's just because he's a great actor. Or, perhaps, he's just got an agent to die for.

Not matter the reasons, though, the latest bird-like rumor to hit the metaphorical windmill of Hollywood buzz - that Cumberbatch is set to feature in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice - might just be a little bit more for real than usual.

After all, this time, the man himself is very pointedly not denying it.

Cue the BBC reporter's Twitter feed:

Now, obviously this remains very much within the realm of rumor - and one deflected question to a British journalist does not a confirmation make - but all the same, it's a big step. Cumberbatch is usually more than happy to deny his involvement in major tentpole pictures when he's, y'know, not involved in them - which means any sort of reluctance to outright refute rumors has to be given at least a second thought or two.

The big question then, is who he's set to play...

The above report, and much of the online buzz, has suggested that Cumberbatch is set to play a villain - but there have been murmurs suggesting a certain green hero, too.

First up, though. let's take a look at some of the more villainous options:


Seen by many as the most obvious casting choice for Cumberbatch, Brainiac is a super-intelligent android from the planet Colu, and one of Superman's most consistently lethal foes. Bald, green skinned, and with a wide range of powers, stretching from possessing others, controlling computer systems and the greatest potential Deus Ex Machina of them all - control over time and space.

A potential Thanos-alike, post-credits, behind-everything-all-along tease, perhaps? It's not as though Cumberbatch couldn't play super-intelligent in his sleep.


A Kryptonite-hearted cyborg, Metallo was originally a mercenary by the name of John Corben, before being transformed into one of the few enemies who could actually stand a chance of killing Superman.

If the filmmakers were looking for a more physical stooge to, say, Lex Luthor - Metallo would be a natural choice, and Cumberbatch has shown he can play wiry but tough in Star Trek Into Darkness - and mo-cap pretty much anything in The Hobbit series.


A 200,000 year old Kryptonian A.I., The Eradicator has appeared in the comics in a variety of forms, including as a small rocket, an energy being and a doppleganger of Superman himself. Which basically means...he can be whatever you want him to be in a movie.

Including, in the comics, both a hero and a villain.

Which seems very much the sort of thing Cumberbatch would be perfect for.

But, of course, there are always some more clear-cut heroic options, too:

Martian Manhunter

The hero many are tipping Cumberbatch to play, J'onn J'onzz was originally a Martian accidentally drawn to Earth by a teleportation device, who promptly became a detective. Over the years, though, he gradually became a key member of the Justice League, with his various (often poorly-defined powers) more-or-less matching Superman's.

With J'onn being one of the less known superheroes expected to feature in the Justice League movie, the character is more open to creative adjustments than most - and being a shape-shifter, the slenderness of Cumberbatch wouldn't be an obstacle.

The Flash

One of the only major DC superheroes still unconfirmed as seeing some screen time in Batman v Superman, The Flash has, despite being a fan-favorite, been largely overlooked when it comes to the rumor mill. There was some talk that Scoot McNairy would play the speedster (think Quicksilver but with a cooler outfit), but the odds are that a bigger name would be sought.

Cumberbatch would be an outside the box option, but it's hard to imagine Warner Bros finding a better actor to play an older, more experienced - but still wise-cracking - version of the hero.

Jimmy Olsen

Want a serious, useful and realistic version of Jimmy Olsen - Superman's pal, cub reporter extraordinaire and general victim of plot-contrived kidnapping?


Hire Sherlock to play him.

or, of course, if you want someone a little more homicidal, and more Batman-linked, there's always...

The Joker


[Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice](movie:711870) isn't set for release until March 25, 2016, so we might have to wait a while to find out who - if anyone - Cumberbatch is playing. But here's hoping!


What do you guys think? Who would you like to see Cumberbatch play?


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