Why Jon Cryer Decided To Play Supergirl's Lex Luthor

Jon Cryer Lex Luthor Supergirl The CW

Jon Cryer's run as Lex Luthor on Supergirl isn't just another job for the 53-year-old actor, it's personal. Cryer formerly played a member of the Luthor family in Superman IV: The Quest For Peace, which went down as one of the worst of the series. The actor hopes that with his upcoming portrayal he and fans can move on from that movie and he can repair a piece of his superhero fandom.

Part of the reason I did Superman IV was because [Superman] changed my life. I was like 14-years-old and [Superman's] tagline was, ‘You will believe a man can fly,’ and boy, I bought it! I totally bought it. Superman IV had really high hopes, but unfortunately, it was very disappointing for people and that had always sort of hurt me in a very 14-year-old boy way. And so I thought, you know, this is my chance to do it right.

The Supergirl showrunners believed Jon Cryer was the right man for the job, and revealed he was the top choice to play the iconic villain. This wasn't explicitly due to his portrayal of Lenny Luthor, but rather co-showrunner Robert Rovner seeing Cryer being able to craft a villain folks hate to love. Rovner and Jessica Queller added to EW they've been pleased with Cryer's performance thus far, and thrilled that DC eventually let them bring the villain to Supergirl.

So just how big of an impact will Lex have throughout Season 4? Jon Cryer shared a bit on what's to come on Supergirl, and it sounds like Lex is going to be that mover and shaker he's typically shown to be.

I think [Lex’s introduction] energizes the second half of the season because his presence in the show and in the story that we’re telling really creates a singular villain that drives everybody’s agenda moving forward.

If that's as good as it sounds, then Jon Cryer will certainly be able to shake off that disappointment he carries from Superman IV. In his defense, most of the issues critics and audiences have with the film have nothing to do with his character, and are more tied to the film's cheap effects and heavy editing due to a cut budget. Given The CW's love of the Arrow-verse, it's safe to say those types of problems won't be happening on Supergirl.

Supergirl Season 4 is still rolling strong on The CW, with new episodes airing Sundays at 8:00 p.m. ET. Jon Cryer's Lex Luthor should be a sizable part of the rest of the season, and with Superman off and doing other things, the pressure will be on for Kara to bring him down. For more on how Supergirl feels about that, read up on Robert Rovner's thoughts on how Lex's arrival impacts her.

Mick Joest
Content Producer

Mick Joest is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend with his hand in an eclectic mix of television goodness. Star Trek is his main jam, but he also regularly reports on happenings in the world of Star Trek, WWE, Doctor Who, 90 Day Fiancé, Quantum Leap, and Big Brother. He graduated from the University of Southern Indiana with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Radio and Television. He's great at hosting panels and appearing on podcasts if given the chance as well.