CW’s next Arrowverse crossover, Crisis on Infinite Earths, is now filming and everybody possible is being brought in, except one. Michael Rosenbaum, best known for playing Lex Luthor on seven consecutive seasons of Smallville, can be counted out.
Persistent rumors and self-assured “scoops” claimed Rosenbaum was a lock before he denied he was ever contacted with an offer. In fact, he first heard about the possibility of featuring in Crisis on the Web. (Related: Smallville Actor Michael Rosenbaum Responds to Story He Is Playing Lex Luthor in CW’s Crisis on Infinite Earths Event)
Fans reacted and sent out their pleas to have him included. That opened the door for negotiations and Rosenbaum’s agent was finally contacted. However, we can verify, thanks to the man himself, he won’t make an appearance.
Rosenbaum revealed the reason this week. He tweeted a full explanation that said Warner Bros. reached out to his reps last Friday at an awkward time. The actor was visiting his grandfather in a nursing home in Florida.
What made it worse was the barebones offer. Rosenbaum wrote they called with “No script. No idea what” he would do or when he had to show up. An undisclosed remuneration was described as “Basically no money.”
They had to know right away and Rosenbaum passed. He expressed his gratitude to his fans and thinks they can understand his position.
Here ya go. 🙂 pic.twitter.com/8PFT6wsPMo
— Michael Rosenbaum (@michaelrosenbum) September 24, 2019
This situation reads like the other signs of chaos at CW and DC parent company WarnerMedia. We’ve already gone through the revolving door of power at the top that led to the resignations of Diane Nelson, Geoff Johns, and Kevin Tsujihara. Some tension lingers between Nelson and Johns. (Related: Former DC Entertainment Pres. Diane Nelson: Geoff Johns is “No Buddy of Mine”)
With Ann Sarnoff in power, J.J. Abrams has been added to the roster of filmmakers and he might take a crack at Superman, with or without Henry Cavill or abiding current film continuity. (Related — Rumor: Henry Cavill Out as Superman – J.J. Abrams Will Look to Recast with Younger Actor)
Elsewhere on the TV front, there was the cancellation of Swamp Thing and suspicions of trouble at DC Universe. Spending cuts from on high seem to be the issue but Warner reps have yet to provide an official statement or thorough justification. (Related: DC Universe Issues a Statement on Swamp Thing’s Cancellation and Executive Producer James Wan Reacts)
DC has been treated strangely by WarnerMedia’s new owner AT&T. More of a lifestyle brand in their eyes, the presence of DC at the hallowed ground of San Diego Comic-Con was greatly reduced this year. Some analysts are led to believe the storied publisher will be sold to cut losses. (Related: Ethan Van Sciver Speculates DC Comics Will Be Sold by AT&T to Please Hedge Fund Investor)
Back in Crisis
Crisis will move forward without Michael Rosenbaum but still has loads of guest appearances planned. Rosenbaum’s old costar Tom Welling, for one, is slated to return, playing his old part of Clark Kent and so is Smallville’s Lois Lane, Erica Durance. (Related: Smallville Actor Tom Welling Teases Appearance in The CW’s Crisis on Infinite Earths Crossover)
Named for the multiverse-collapsing event that reset the DC Comics universe in the 80s, Crisis on Infinite Earths will incorporate the entire Arrowverse, including Supergirl, plus Black Lightning. Blasts from the past aside from Smallville, such as Burt Ward’s Robin and Kevin Conroy as Bruce Wayne are also slated. Rumors still persist that Lynda Carter’s Wonder Woman could make an appearance as well.. DC Extended Universe characters, like Henry Cavill’s Superman and the Justice League, could also wind up in the mix. (Related — Report: CW Crossover Crisis on Infinite Earths Will Feature DCEU Characters Plus Lynda Carter, Burt Ward, and Tom Welling!)
What do you make of Rosenbaum’s explanation?