Joe Manganiello to Play Villain Deathstroke in Ben Affleck's Batman Movie

The actor is set to direct a stand-alone Batman film.
Amanda Edwards/WireImage; Courtesy of ACO/DC Entertainment

Joe Manganiello is ready to go toe-to-toe with the Batman.

The Magic Mike actor will play the DC villain Deathstroke in Ben Affleck's upcoming solo Batman film, DC Entertainment president and chief creative officer Geoff Johns confirmed in an interview with The Wall Street Journal

Affleck, who is directing and starring in the film, teased test footage of the popular DC Comics character last week without revealing who would be playing the villain. 

In the comics, Deathstroke was introduced 1980 in New Teen Titans No. 2. The character, whose real name is Slade Wilson, is an expert assassin with super strength and stamina. On TV he has been played by Manu Bennett on CW's Arrow.

Manganiello has been eyed for DC Extended Universe film for some time, with insiders telling The Hollywood Reporter in 2013 that Man of Steel director Zack Snyder liked him as a possible Superman before casting Henry Cavill. The former True Blood star was also among the names being considered to play the Dark Knight in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice before Affleck stepped into the cape and cowl. 

He already has superhero film experience, playing the bully Flash Thompson in Sam Raimi's 2002 Spider-Man.

Affleck is currently shooting Justice League in London, and Johns declined to say if Deathstroke would appear in the superhero teamup film. 

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