Do You Want Jon Hamm To Play Superman?

Published 5 years ago by , Updated July 12th, 2013 at 10:16 am,

Our friend and ex-Screen Ranter Jamie Williams over at Think McFly Think has posted an update on the upcoming Superman reboot movie, The Man of Steel, which is being produced over at Warner Bros. under the guidance of David Goyer and Chris Nolan, with Jonathan Nolan potentially directing the film.

Actually, this latest “update” isn’t really that – it’s more a continuation of a rumor floated by TMT from earlier this year, stating that WB is considering  Mad Men star Jon Hamm for the role of Superman. TMT made it clear in both reports that the studio has simply been considering Hamm for the part (not to be confused with making an offer), but that hasn’t stopped EW from firing back that Hamm’s reps haven’t heard about the deal and that “Superhamm is just a dream.”

Earlier this year, MTV caught up with Hamm and asked the actor first-hand about the fan push to have him wear the iconic cape. The actor’s response:  “It’s a tricky road to go down with some of those heroes, because they’re not flawed. Superman is Superman – he’s invincible, so where’s the drama?

Well, we know that Goyer and the Nolans are working hard to bring the drama to the next Superman movie, and while these comic book casting sagas can be a migraine for fanboys (See: Captain America and the new Spider-Man), until we know for sure who is going to be donning the red and blue outfit next, I thought I should at least ask you guys: Do you want Jon Hamm to play Superman?



Of course, the first issue to discuss is the age factor. Jon Hamm would be forty before he ever stepped in front of cameras to play Superman, and for some fans (and studio powers that be) that is simply too old. Personally, I’ve never been a big believer in the notion that an actor’s age affects their ability to play a superhero – I’ve always thought that what truly mattered was how the actor’s swagger and stature meshed with the swagger and stature of the superhero they’re playing.

Just take a look at the current roster of actors playing some of our favorite superheroes: Robert Downey Jr. has been in his forties since he first stepped into the Iron Man franchise, however, his eccentric rapscallion personality has been the perfect fit for the eccentric rapscallion persona that has always defined Tony Stark. Chris Hemsworth is in his twenties, but with a full-grown beard and time well-spent in the gym pumping iron, he now looks gruff and tough enough to play a convincing Thor. Meanwhile, Chris Evans is about to turn thirty, yet many fanboys think he has too much of a baby face to pull off the commanding stature of an iconic hero like Captain America.

On the DC movie side: Ryan Reynolds will be trying to prove himself as a proper Hal Jordan when Green Lantern hits theaters next summer – though the fact that Reynolds will be in his mid-thirties has little to do with that issue. Christian Bale was only in his early thirties when he suited up for Batman Begins, however by the time Nolan’s Batman 3 hits theaters in summer 2012 Bale will be staring at age 40. Taking all that into account (especially on the DC side of things), Jon Hamm’s age should in no way restrict him from playing Superman.

More to the point: there is a reason they call him “SuperMAN.” The character (as you can see in just about every piece of artwork inspired by him) has the look of a strong, chiseled and mature man, not so much a man with boyish looks. So if the character looks like a mature man, should there be any debate about casting a mature (read: older) man in the role? Not in my mind – though I’m sure that Smallville fans might have a few points of contention…



superman ross016 Do You Want Jon Hamm To Play Superman?

Now, we’ve heard names like Zach Levi, Brandon Routh and Tom Welling all being nominated or rumored for the role of Superman, and since all three of those guys are in their late twenties / early thirties, they certainly fit the age range. However, there are superheroes and then there are superhero icons – those heroes who have become household names not so much because of the comic books, TV shows, movies and other merchandising of their characters, but rather because they represent some profound ideal or symbol that resonates with many, many people across the world. Captain America is one of those heroes and Superman is certainly another.

As I’ve already mentioned, Chris Evans being cast as Captain America has a lot of people nervous (Evans himself among them). Cap is simply a guy who has a bright shining aura of red, white and blue heroism surrounding him at all times, while Chris Evans…does not. When that whole Captain America cast saga was unfolding, the big debate was over which actor could do more than wear Cap’s costume – we all wanted to know who could possibly embody his spirit (and Jon Hamm’s name came up then too, might I remind you).

Well, the guy playing the role of Superman has a harder job than that. Not only does the character come with big red boots that need to be filled, there was actually a guy (Christopher Reeve, you may have heard of him) who successfully filled those boots and managed to own the character in full body and spirit – and this was long before the days of muscle-padded costumes and CGI effects. While some people thought Brandon Routh was the second coming of Reeve, many, many, many, other people felt no such love  or adoration; in my opinion, Jon Hamm is a guy who could succeed where Routh did not.

Lets break it down: Hamm is tall, dark haired, handsome (I’ll say that just once!), all-American in appearance, with a jaw line that looks like it was shaped after a 1950s comic book character. Due to his role as troubled ad man extraordinaire Don Draper on Mad Men, Hamm has shown an impressive range of dramatic chops (inner turmoil), while women already fantasize about being swept up in his arms and carried off. Necessary ingredients for a proper Superman. Because of the actor’s hilarious turns as a pretty-boy geek on 30 Rock, fanboys can already imagine him in a pair glasses with tussled hair, bringing that “Aw shucks” friendly awkwardness you need from Clark Kent. In Ben Affleck’s upcoming crime thriller The Town, Hamm will show his boiling intensity and action movie physicality, playing a lawman who is  hell-bent on collaring a ring of Boston crooks. In The Day The Earth Stood Still… um, let’s just forget that Hamm was in that flick.

jon hamm clark kent Do You Want Jon Hamm To Play Superman?

Hamm on ’30 Rock’ – Clark Kent appeal?

The point is: despite the fact that Smallville fans love Welling, or that Superman Returns fans think Routh “wasn’t that bad,” there are few leading men who can convince movie goers the world over that he is our all-powerful protector, while simultaneously convincing us that this godlike figure is still able to disguise himself in plain sight as the caricature of an average schmo. It’ll be even more complicated to convince a modern audience that Superman is vulnerable (emotionally speaking), insecure, and yes, even lonely.

When you properly explore the character there’s actually a lot of deep-seeded emotion and turmoil that comes with The Man of Steel (see: Richard Donner’s Superman II). I think that Hamm is definitely one of those chosen few who can bring both the look and “the drama” to a character who so badly needs to be seen as human again. This will not be lightweight acting if DC/WB wants to do Superman justice in their next cinematic venture – but Hamm is one actor I certainly believe in for the job.

The question is, do you agree?

If you want to talk more about what you expect from the next Superman movie, be sure to read our article “How to Reboot Superman“.

Sources: Think McFly Think , MTV & EW

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  1. It would be great to see Routh back. It’s not his fault that Singer is a bad director when it comes to superhero movies. Routh got the short end of the stick and has received most of the blame. That is not fare. He was cast for Superman, just as Reeves and Reeve were which means he has the talent just as they did. Sadly we live in an age where most of the time the actors get the blame not the directors. Take a look at Smallville, the actors are really good at their jobs. If there has been a bad season its the directors not the actors. They are just doing what they are told. Look at Harrison Ford in Indian Jones 4 as a perfect example. If Routh isn’t back which is the case sadly, then whoever the new Man of Steel is, he needs to be like these past three Supermen! Someone we can look up to.

  2. Just so everyone knows, if you dislike Smmallville and you tell a Smallville fan that, it’s like telling a trekkie that Star Trek is a bad show. I’m just saying. HAHA

  3. Foopher to me he hasn’t improved he is just as bad in season 8 as he was in season 1. To be fair I have not seen season 9 so maybe he got better but unless in that three month break between season he improved by 400% and became mediocre he is awful. I never understood how he got the part he was one of the worst actors I’ve seen might as well give the part to Paul Walker bout the same amount of talent.

    • to be honest, i think he was a horrible actor in the first 7-8 seasons, and i love smallville, but i feel that he has become better really. but no way is he going to play superman in a superman movie! that will just be bad.. i mean hes not that good..

      • Dan, I’m not saying he’s the next Johnny Depp (or wait you don’t think he’s good uhm… the next Al Pacino), I’m just saying he’s improved.

  4. Gary it’s been stated in several stories that this will not be a Superman origin story it’s been done a million times over and they want to pick up with Superman already being superman.


    • Totally agreed… Tom Welling for Superman! That’ll be awesome!

      • FYI for Smallville fans, Tom Welling will be wearing THE superman suit from superman returns. It is in the promo and has been stated by the writers. We will be able to compare Brandon Routh and Tom Welling in the same suit. I for one am looking forward to it.

  6. Lol I miss Dean Cain. Lois and Clark wasn’t the greatest show of all time but it was a lot of fun. By the way in my opinion that was the best Lois we have seen. Strong and Independent and hot as hell.

    • Hatcher has since let herself go in my opinion daniel, but she was a damn hot lois. she even looked better in tango and cash lol

  7. Hamm would need to get in major shape to pull off Supes. I mean, in a lot of ways he would be great, but I have seen him shirtless in that “Sergio” SNL digital short. And that is one gross, flabby dude. Which is hilarious in the sketch, but bad for Supes.

  8. TOM WELLING! Hamm looks too smarmy, Lex maybe, but not Supes.

    • not gonna happen

  9. All the negative Smallville comments aside, I think moaning about this Hamm guys age is silly, it’s not going to be an origin story so why does it matter?

    You look at the comics, he’s often drawn as of he were late thirties, early forties.

    • i agree Sam. im trying hard not to be a Smallville basher, but ijust dont think Welling has the look that the Nolans are looking for maybe, same with Routh

    • @ Sam

      I agree.Plus since this isnt going to be another origin story(Thank God),I think it would be awesome to see a Superman with a pinch of gray in his hair.Add the wisdom and age factor,and lets see more of a Kingdom Come Superman.Thats one of my favorite interpretations of him.:)

  10. I’d like to think they are almost going for a retro styling in this film (like the art deco style in the Animated Batman), casting someone like this suggests they want classic Superman, and maybe Welling and Routh don’t quite fit that.

    I just want this to be made and for it to be good.

    • “I just want this to be made and for it to be good.”

      Don’t we all, Sam. Don’t we all.

  11. I still prefer Brandon Routh or Tom Welling as Superman. As for Jon Hamm, the 2nd picture of him to me makes him look like he’d be perfect as Lex Luthor. The LuthorCorp. business, thinkin no-one can touch him Lex Luthor that is. Like from Superman: TAS.

  12. I really don’t understand the interest in Hamm as Supes at all. Maybe if it was the 1960′s he would be ideal, but can you actually imagine him in the costume? He’d look like Adam West.

    Alot of people point to the comics but are we looking for a film based on the oldest ones where hes a man with a bit of shoulder width, or something from the last few decades? Cuz Superman is a big guy!
    Hamm wouldnt cut it in my opinion.

  13. Hamm could easily pack on muscle look at Hemsworth and Evans and how much muscle they packed on.

    Do you honestly expect to find a talented actor who is the size of supes in the comics. Can you say high expectations. There is no one that fits that size and can actually act.

    Tell me this what would you prefer a massive talentless actor or a talented actor that is large but not as large as supes in the comics.

    He’s tall he has the perfect jaw line, his facial features are very similar and most importantly he’s talented.

  14. Tom Welling = Best choice for Superman… I didn’t like superman untill I saw Smallville. The guy has proved him self to be the greatest Clark Kent (no offense to Christopher Reeves) and I bet he’d make an awesome superman. Hamm is a good actor but I dont want to see him as superman.

  15. Ok now I’m starting to get annoyed by people saying Christopher Reeves! It’s Reeve!!!

  16. Here is the problem. Even if he did put on the muscle, which is highly unlikely because of his age, by the time they put out any sequels or the JLA movies this guy is going to be waaaaayyyyy to old to be Superman. If this were just a one shot movie then okay. It is not though. If they want sequels then it will be better to see a Superman that doesn’t require a walker.
    I am still all about Tom Welling being Superman. Brandon Routh wasn’t bad at all. He just had a terrible script. It was really scary how much he sounds like Christopher Reeves.

    • REEVE, Christopher REEVE!

      Oh, as for being too old to put muscle on. I’m 41 and in the last 3 months I’ve lost 2 inches on my waist and packed on 5 pounds of muscle only hitting the gym 3 days a week. If Hamm gets the role don’t you think he’ll be in the gym EVERY DAY for hours to get in shape for the part?

  17. He’s not to old to gain muscle at all. Hugh Jackman is in his 40s and gains muscle like crazy to play Wolverine but loses it when he plays another part only to gain it back.

    RDJ started playing stark at the same age as Hamm would be. RDJ just did his second Iron Man film and still going strong. He still has Avengers and IM3 not to mention an Avengers sequel. Hamm could gain the muscle older men do it all the time I’ve seen men in their 50s beef up and get in great shape. Hamm could easily pull of a trilogy and is a fantastic actor.

    • Maybe it’s ok for RDJ to play Ironman at 50, because he wears a mask! Supes doesn’t wear a mask and I doubt that anyone wants to see Supes as a 50 year old! It just isn’t what comes to mind when you think of Superman. Folks want a young, virile, invicible Superman. JMO.

      • Young? Why? I’ve thought about it long and hard (giggity) and he should be on the maybe list. While I don’t think he has “the look” he has enough of it. It wouldn’t be hard to pack on some muscle. If Smallville can reinvent the origin story of Superman, than maybe this movie can somewhat reinvent to look. Invincible yet believable. I mean Zod wasn’t buff in Superman II. Just because he can’t leap tall buildings in a single bound doesn’t mean he has to look like John Cena.

        • “can leap”… my bad

    • Yep, it’s called steroids.

    • I am not doubting his acting ability. He probably is a very good actor. I will not say everybody wants a young Superman but I do. I also want someone who will stick with the role and like I said won’t be using a walker by the time they make the JLA movies. I am looking for someone that will be around for the next 10-15 yrs because if they do everything they want to do, that is what it will take. 3 Superman movies is 6 yrs easy. Then you add however many JLA movies there will be thats 10yrs easy.

  18. I think he would be a good choice…certainly better than the man child Tom Welling..I don’t want to see Smallville : The Movie

  19. This SMALLVILLE fan is OK with Welling not playing big blue, but I just don’t see this guy in the role.

  20. No you want supes to be young not everyone agrees. Some of us want a man as superman.

    By the way ironman wears a mask not Tony Stark

  21. Superman is Superman – he’s invincible, so where’s the drama?” from that qoute alone no. Personally i think that role will be hard to fill because everyone looks at Christopher Reeve as the standard for Superman. I thought Brandon Routh was a good Superman but i cant judge people by there acting because Im not one but it was convincing for me. I personally think what killed Superman Returns for me was the costume. I just hope they go back to the Christopher Reeve style costume.

  22. Maybe some of you will change your mind when you actually see Tom Welling as Superman.

    • Not a chance

  23. And Tony Stark is Ironman. Superman may be able to fight like he’s still in his prime as he ages slow in the comics but on film it doesnt work that way no matter how fit they get. Stallone maybe be older and got into shape for the Expendables but also it took its toll on his body doin it. If Hamm was to be Superman at his age, i wouldn’t be surprised somthing happens while filming a sequel or by the time they get to a Justice League film as someone stated which seems to be years away. I rather have Brandon Routh or Tom Welling cause we seen what they can do and im sure both of them could easily work into the Nolan’s vision.

    • wally, i highly doubt that either of them are what the Nolans are looking for.

      • I don’t care what the Nolan’s are lookin for. Im just hoping to see a good movie. Just because Nolan had huge success with TDK doesnt mean he’ll have that same mojo with Superman whos the opposite of Batman. Im not keen on seeing a darker Superman as a angry God neither, unless he went up against the likes of Darkseid or Doomsday.

        • well, dont see it when it comes out then lol

  24. @ Bryan

    I liked Superman Returns and thought it was ok. I remember seeing pictures of Routh before seeing the movie and thought he didnt look like Christopher Reeve till i saw the movie itself and i was like WOW. Couple things my friends & i didnt care for about it was it just seemed Singer was trying to remake the Original and even though Superman does have a kid in the comics, i thought it was a bad idea cause i knew what the outcome would be like. But i thought they should of continued from Superman Returns and not have the kid in sequels, maybe be mentioned but that it. Then I thought the Nolan’s should just have their film follow Superman Returns despite mistakes made and change them since after what i read, it sounds like Nolan’s take is one of the proposed ideas for the sequel Singer intended to make especially using villains like Luthor/Brainiac. On other hand i wouldnt mind if the Nolan’s film just ignored Superman Returns and pick off after Superman 2. I agree with ya about the costume. I wished they sticked with same design as Christopher Reeve’s costume w/ the bigger S emblem, Yellow S emblem on the cape. But i wouldn’t mind it being made outta the same material as Rouths which supposely what Welling costume will be lighter color in Smallville’s finale.

  25. Wow I’m gonna guess some ofyou are 15 and 40 is like so totally old to you.

    First of all there is no for sure that anyone will be around in 10 to 15 years regardless of age look at Heath Ledger. Second in 10-15 years he will be 50-55 and people in this crazy new modern era of ours can live to be 80 I know crazy world. By the way how old is Jack Nicolson ? Cause he isn’t on a walker seems to get around just fine to me. Seriously this isn’t the 1700s anymore people can live beyond 40. Given today’s youth I’d say a 40 year old is more likely to live 10-15 years than a 20 something who will probably od tomorrow.

    Superman by the way doesn’t do martial arts. He flys, he lifts things and he punches. Physically the actor just needs to know how to throw a punch sfx does the rest. He doesn’t need to actually be able to lift a car and when’s the last time superman did a back flip followed by a round house kick? Just because someone is older than you it doesn’t make them old.

    No Tom welling doesn’t fit in with the Nolans. He is way to baby faced to play a man and the Nolans tend to work with gifted actors not actors desperately fighting to be mediocre and failing.

    Brandon Rouh still looks baby faced, but has gotten better at acting he was awful but has improved he has achieved what Welling never has mediocre talent.

    • Yeah but Jack Nicholson isn’t wanting to play Superman. As much as I love Jack I don’t think he could pull it off either. You are right that there is no guarantee that someone will be around for 10-15 yrs but if they are I don’t want playing some old saggy representation of the Man of Steel. You are also correct in saying that there is life after 40… but not as Superman. I would agree with you if it were just one movie or possibly 2 but not for the amount of movies that they will want him for. If they want to change actors every time then I really don’t want to watch. If we are going with older Gentlemen actors then why not Adrian Pasdar. He can already fly. :)

    • I could just see it…Jack sucking in his ample gut and screaming:

  26. Brandon Routh is the man. He’s got a big GG.

  27. Not sure about Hamm as Superman. I think he does have that look and the appeal for it. I do think there are other actors out there who could take the role and own it like Reeve did. Honestly, I would suggest leaving Superman alone and letting us enjoy the first two Supermans with Reeve and Hackman.

    But since it will be done, I suggest a look at Superman: Birthright and check out how the artists portray Superman and then portray Clark Kent. Two completely different styles of drawings with Superman looking like he is in his mid-thirties to upper forties. If the movie is not a retelling of the origin (though, having references in there would be good for a refresher) I think an older Superman is what would be good for the franchise. Look at Hamm and tell me if you think the guy is 40. He looks to be in his early thirties.

    I know some are suggesting him for Lex but John Slattery would rock as an older Lex. Personally, I don’t get the age thing because if we were sticking to age in the comics, every superhero would be in their 80s by now. Excluding Green Lantern and Flash because there are four different people who are those characters.

  28. a way that Superman being an angry god could work would be for the film to be based 40 or so years into the future and everyone that CK/Superman has ever cared about has died from old age (and he hasnt really aged at all) and he’s all alone in the world and nobody really cares about Superman anymore until the likes of Brianiac, DoomsDay, Darkseid come along and i know Lex is meant to be in this Remake, well its Lex Luthor he always has a plan to be around for ever so maybe he’s a clone or something but i wouldnt use Lex as the main Enemy just have him in the background plotting something for near the end of the film or for a sequel, but id like to see brainiac and Doomsday in this film and have DoomsDay under Brainiacs control and make the film EPIC and around 3hrs long

  29. Tom Welling, Brandon Routh have baby faces? Might wanna add Christian Bale to that list then. I forgot, He’s Batman so he hides it. I think film makers go the acting chops more so than their looks. I bet with the right wardrome, right pair of glasses, you could make eithier Routh or Welling like like Clark Kent good as Dean Cain’s as i read Nolan wants instead of the goofy Clark. If you want to base things on looks. Jon Hamm looks perfect if they wanted to do another bio-picture of the late George Reeves. That or have him be bald and play Lex Luthor instead.