Jesse Eisenberg was a guest on The Diane Rehm Show earlier this week, and was asked by a caller who he channeled to help him portray Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice villain Lex Luthor.
Eisenberg explained that he decided to channel himself and what makes him angry, rather than look at previous actors who played the role and try to mimic them. Listen to his comments in the video above, or read the transcript below via Comic Book Movie:
“I’ve always noticed the best thing to channel, as an actor, is yourself. To figure out what makes you angry, what makes you feel vengeful or righteous. Those are the feelings that Lex Luthor has. And use that as opposed to kind of watching Gene Hackman, who’s a great actor obviously and played that part originally, and think, ‘How can I kind of mirror that?'”
“Because the truth is, me mirroring him would just come off weird. We have different faces, different life experiences, different emotions, but what I do have – that I have more than anybody – is my own feelings, and so I use those, and then the character seems not only real, but emotional and just. He believes he’s the hero of his own story – is the kind of the actor cliche – when you’re playing the villain, you’re the hero of your own story. That’s the kind of most interesting way for me as an actor, and I think, for an audience to appreciate as well.”
We’ve only got a small glimpse of Lex Luthor in the trailers, but I’m definitely excited to see what Eisenberg brings to the role. Let me know what you think of this new interview in the comments below.