Superman: Legacy Casts Jimmy Olsen and Eve Tessmacher

Now that the actors’ strike is over, the Superman: Legacy cast is filling up faster than a speeding bullet. Today, an exclusive from The Hollywood Reporter revealed that Skyler Gisondo has been cast as Jimmy Olsen, the newspaper photographer who works with Clark Kent and Lois Lane at the Daily Planet. Additionally, Sara Sampaio will be playing Eve Tessmacher, a henchwoman of Lex Luthor. Jimmy Olsen has been a supporting character in the Superman story forever, but Ms. Tessmacher is not originally from the comic books; she first appeared in Richard Donner’s Superman in 1978, where she was played by Valerie Perrine. Ms. Tessmacher has since appeared in comics, TV series, and other Superman media. Skyler Gisondo is probably best known for his role in the HBO series The Righteous Gemstones (which is outstanding), but he’s appeared in lots of shows and movies, like Booksmart, Licorice Pizza, and that awful Vacation sequel/remake/reboot that died the quick and painful death it deserved. Sara Sampaio is a model who’s acted here and there, mostly in things I’ve never heard of.

Skyler Gisondo is note-perfect casting. It’s like they pulled Jimmy Olsen off the page of a comic book. But more than that, he’s a good actor. He’s terrific in The Righteous Gemstones, where he plays a seemingly milquetoast preacher’s son (or son of a preacher’s son, more accurately) who’s a secret badass. And here’s where the age thing can get murky in movies; Gisondo is actually only three years younger than David Corenswet, who’s playing Superman, but he looks even younger than he is, and I’m sure Corenswet will be made up to appear more mature as Superman, so it works. Sara Sampaio, well, I don’t know what her acting is like, but I know she’s drop-dead gorgeous, so I’m not complaining. It’s funny to think how Ms. Tessmacher held on as a character after Superman and Superman II; she’s fun in the movies, but she’s not particularly deep. It makes me curious to see what role she’ll play in Superman: Legacy; will she still be a ditzy sidekick to Luthor, or will she be more capable and responsible, more traditionally villainous? (And was part of Nicholas Hoult’s audition practicing his rendition of “Ms. Tessmacheeeeeeeerrrrrr!”? That’s rhetorical; James Gunn doesn’t like that Lex Luthor.) I’ve certainly got concerns about the movie and the emerging DCU, but I love some of the moves Gunn and Peter Safran are making.

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