Michael Shannon cast as Superman's supervillain General Zod

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The Independent Culture

In the upcoming reboot of the Superman story, Man of Steel by director Zack Synder ( Sucker Punch), supervillain General Zod will be portrayed by Michael Shannon ( Revolutionary Road).

Shannon will face off against Henry Cavill's Superman/Clark Kent, joining the cast including Diane Lane and Kevin Costner as Kent's earthly parents, and Amy Adams ( The Fighter) as Lois Lane. The last principle characters to be cast are Zod's criminal cohorts.

In a release from the film studio, the director states, "Zod is not only one of Superman's most formidable enemies, but one of the most significant because he has insights into Superman that others don't. Michael is a powerful actor who can project both the intelligence and the malice of the character, making him perfect for the role."

Viggo Mortensen had been considered for the role but couldn't fit the production into his schedule. Terence Stamp portrayed Zod in the 1978 and 1980 Superman movies.

Shannon will portray other bad guys in 2012, including a rogue cop in Premium Rush with Joseph Gordon-Levitt ( Inception) and Richard Kuklinski, an infamous contract killer and family man, in The Iceman, costarring Benicio Del Toro.

The actor was nominated for an Oscar for Revolutionary Road, costarring with Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, and appeared in the HBO Golden Globe-winning series Boardwalk Empire. He will next be seen in the true story of Machine Gun Preacher costarring Gerald Butler ( 300), due out in September, and also appears in The Broken Tower, directed by and costarring James Franco.

Man of Steel is scheduled to hit theaters in December 2012.