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Monday, January 31, 2011

British Invasion: Superhero Edition

Posted By on January 31, 2011, 3:08 PM

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In a world of tumult and uncertainty, it's nice that at least one thing is a constant: the degree to which nerds will get worked up over the casting of superhero movies. ---

The latest hubbub comes on the heels of the announcement that director Zack Snyder's (Watchmen) planned Superman film -- tentatively titled Superman: Man of Steel -- will feature as the iconic hero Henry Cavill of the Showtime series The Tudors. And get this: He's British.

This, naturally, is cause for great alarm, since Superman is as American as ... something that came here from space. To make matters worse, this now makes three great American superheroes whose current incarnation will feature a British actor: Cavill's Superman, Christian Bale's Batman, and Andrew Garfield in next year's reboot of Spider-man. This, as Lady Catherine DeBourgh of Pride and Prejudice would say, is not to be borne.

Let's leave aside for a moment my knee-jerk disdain for getting worked up over casting news, and focus on this nationalistic furor. Because of course, American actors have never been cast as British heroic icons like Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey Jr.) or Robin Hood (Kevin Costner). Or an Australian as a Canadian (Hugh Jackman's Wolverine). And maybe, just maybe, we should all just wait to see THE ACTUAL MOVIE before deciding whether the casting was or was not a criminal offense on pop culture.

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