WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Warner Bros.' Justice League, in theaters now.
Joe Manganiello's Deathstroke looks as if he stepped out of a comic book page in what appears to be a behind-the-scenes photo from Justice League.
The snapshot, which surfaced on Reddit, depicts the True Blood veteran as a blond Slade Wilson with extras from the film's post-credits scene aboard Lex Luthor's yacht. In the sequence, the criminal mastermind (played by Jesse Eisenberg) celebrates his newfound freedom from Arkham Asylum and mentions to the fan-favorite mercenary his desire for them to form their own league, which many have presumed to be a reference to DC Comics' Injustice League.
Manganiello's role in Justice League was teased more than a year ago by Ben Affleck, with Deathstroke then tipped to appear as the primary antagonist in Warner Bros.' Batman solo movie. However, after Affleck stepped aside as director of The Batman and was succeeded by Matt Reeves, Manganiello's cinematic future as Deathstroke seemed uncertain at best. Asked in July whether he had any information about Deathstroke's status, the actor replied, "I don’t. Well, I do but nothing that I can share. I know everything but I can’t say any of it.”
That response was cast in a new light last month with the news that the studio is developing a Deathstroke film directed by Gareth Evans (The Raid), with Manganiello in the title role.
Introduced in 1980 by Marvel Wolfman and George Perez in DC Comics’ New Teen Titans #2, Deathstroke is Slade Wilson, a mercenary and assassin with enhanced strength, reflexes, agility and healing who purports to use 90 percent of his brain at one time, making him a tactical genius. Originally the archenemy of the Teen Titans, who helped to bring down the team in the seminal “Judas Contract” storyline, Deathstroke has in recent decades become a major player in the DC Universe, where he currently headlines his own title.
In theaters now, Justice League stars Ben Affleck as Batman, Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, Henry Cavill as Superman, Amy Adams as Lois Lane, Jason Momoa as Aquaman, Ezra Miller as The Flash, Ray Fisher as Cyborg, Jeremy Irons as Alfred Pennyworth, Diane Lane as Martha Kent, Ciarán Hinds as Steppenwolf, Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor and J.K. Simmons as Commissioner Gordon.
(via We Got This Covered)