If you sighed in relief when the constant stream of casting news about Zack Snyder's Man of Steel finally ended when the film went into production in July, brace yourself: there's been a last-minute switcheroo. Julia Ormond had been cast back in June as Kal-El's Kryptonian mom, opposite Russell Crowe as Jor-El, but now Snyder has brought in Israeli actress Ayelet Zurer to play the role instead. Deadline confirmed the news but couldn't figure out a reason for the change.

Looking from the outside, it's hard for us to figure out a reason as well-- Ormond and Zurer are roughly the same age, and while Ormond has higher name recognition thanks to a pretty steady career since the 90s. Zurer was recently seen opposite Tom Hanks in Angels & Demons and has a role in the upcoming Darling Companion with Diane Keaton, Kevin Kline and Dianne Wiest. The cynical answer says that there were interpersonal conflicts on the set that led to Ormond taking off, whether problems between her and Crowe or her and Snyder. It's unlikely we'll ever get any kind of real answer along those lines, and given how historically small the role of Kal-El's Krypton mother is, I doubt many comic book nerds will do the digging to find out. Zurer will be shooting her scenes this week as the Man of Steel production chugs along in Vancouver. The movie, as if you possibly could have forgotten, opens June 14 next summer.

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