Ben Affleck’s standalone BATMAN movie has cast Joe Manganiello to play the central villain Deathstroke, aka Slade Wilson. The news was confirmed by DC Entertainment president and chief creative officer Geoff Johns.
The character was created in 1980 by Mary Wolfman and George Perez. He is a mercenary and assassin who began as the archenemy of the Teen Titans after his initial appeared in The New Teen Titans #2. As his role in the DC universe grew, parallels were established between Wilson and Batman. He has a deep grudge with the Green Arrow which was explored in The CW DC universe on Arrow, where Deathstroke was portrayed by Manu Bennett to great critical and fan reception.
Affleck, who is directing as well as starring in the standalone film and writing the script with Johns, got fans excited last week with the reveal of the villain on social media. He posted a short clip of what appeared to be a screen test of Deathstroke last week on Twitter, prompting viewers to guess who was wearing the mask.
— Ben Affleck (@BenAffleck) August 29, 2016
While Affleck is also set to appear in Justice League due out in 2017, Johns did not mention if Manganiello’s Deathstroke would also appear in other films in the universe.
Manganiello is best known for his work on HBO’s True Blood and the feature films Magic Mike and Magic Mike XXL. He most recently appeared in Netflix’s Pee-Wee’s Big Holiday.
Emily J | Staff Writer
This news was first reported in The Wall Street Journal.