Warner Bros. Pictures today confirmed rumors that obscure TV actor Brandon Routh has been signed to star as Superman in the upcoming film by X-Men director Bryan Singer. Word of Rouths casting has been spreading over the Internet this past week but the studio has kept a tight lip until now.
The 25-year-old Routh beat out thousands of other hopefuls following an exhaustive search that spanned the U.S., the U.K., Canada and Australia. He is expected to don the tights for principal photography in Australia early next year. Produced by Jon Peters, Bryan Singer and Gilbert Adler from a screenplay by Michael Dougherty and Dan Harris, the untitled pic is slated for a 2006 release.
Singer issued a statement on his choice of a star, saying "Contrary to speculation, it was always my absolute intention to hire an unknown for this role. Brandon is an extremely fine actor who possesses the physical qualifications of Clark Kent/Superman. But he also embodies the legacy and history of this character in a way that makes me certain he’s the right choice."
Nicholas Cage and Josh Hartnett were attached to the role at points in the films long, troubled history, which has seen a number of directors come and go. Brett Ratner, director of Rush Hour and Red Dragon, championed Guiding Light star Matt Bomer before the project was turned over to Charlies Angels: Full Throttle helmer McG, who looked at a number of lesser-known actors.
Routh’s television credits include stints on One Life to Live, Gilmore Girls, Will & Grace and Cold Case. He recently wrapped his feature debut in Quantum Ent.s upcoming film Deadly, starring opposite Laura Prepon and Tess Harper.