This is a stunning bit of casting, considering Simmons is fondly remembered as J. Jonah Jameson in the Sam Raimi series of Spider-Man films. The character was so popular that he didn’t visibly re-appear in the rebooted Amazing Spider-Man duology (he was only referenced but never seen in person) because Simmons’ performance was too iconic to go up against. Simmons even continued playing the character by voicing Jameson in shows such as Ultimate Spider-Man and Marvel’s Avengers Assemble.
Seeing such a big player from a former Marvel universe jump over to DC is something of a head-spinner, but once you’ve re-oriented yourself, this sounds like phenomenal casting. Simmons has proven time and time again that he’s one of the best actors currently working — he was the sole bright spot in all of Terminator Genisys — and he’s more than capable of balancing Gordon’s authoritative and paternal qualities. Will he be rocking the classic bespectacled and mustachioed look of the Commissioner, or will he be bringing something different to character visually? His J. Jonah Jameson looked like he jumped straight from pages of Stan Lee & Steve Ditko’s original comic, but I wonder if that will be the same for Gordon’s transition to the screen.
Gordon was the last character needing to be cast before production on Justice League could get underway, so get ready to hear a lot more about the DCEU‘s upcoming projects.
Simmons joins the ranks of Neil Hamilton, Pat Hingle, Bob Hastings, Gary Oldman, Bryan Cranston, and Ben McKenzie of those who have brought the most famous police commissioner in popular fiction to life. We’ll see Simmons as Batman’s trusted ally and best friend when Justice League: Part One opens on November 17, 2017.