Brandon Routh

Brandon Routh

Infobox actor

imagesize = 200px
caption = Brandon Routh, 2007
birthname = Brandon James Routh
birthdate = birth date and age|mf=yes|1979|10|9
birthplace = Des Moines, Iowa
deathdate =
yearsactive = 1999—
othername =
spouse = Courtney Ford (2007— )
website =
awards = Saturn Award for Best Actor
2006 "Superman Returns"

Brandon James Routh (pron-en|ˈraʊθ, rhyming with "mouth"; born October 9, 1979) is an American actor and former fashion model. He grew up in Iowa before moving to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career, and subsequently appeared on several television series throughout the early 2000s. In 2005, he was cast as the titular hero of the 2006 film "Superman Returns".


Early life

Routh, third of four children,cite web | |work=Routh flies high in debut as Superman |url= |accessmonthday=June 19|accessyear=2006] was born in Des Moines, Iowa, on October 9, 1979, the son of Katie, a teacher, and Ron Routh, a carpenter; both of his parents play music in their spare time and his sister, Sara Routh, is a singer. Routh's family, which is Methodist,cite web | |title=The Religious Affiliation of Comic Book Character Clark Kent/Kal-El Superman
url= |accessmonthday=June 19 |accessyear=2006
] has German, French, English, and Native American ancestry.cite web |work=MetroWest Daily News |title=If the tights fit: Newcomer Brandon Routh takes to the sky in ’Superman Returns’ |url= |accessmonthday=June 25|accessyear=2006] Routh grew up in Norwalk, Iowa, which is located approximately convert|100|mi|km south of Woolstock, the hometown of George Reeves, the second actor to play Superman. During his childhood, Routh thought that a full-time acting career was unrealistic, citing his small-town background. In his spare time, he played the trumpet and the piano. Routh attended Norwalk High School,cite web | |title=The man behind the cape |url= |accessmonthday=June 25 |accessyear=2006] where he played sports and participated in music and theatre. He describes himself as a "momma's boy" and not "the most popular kid" during his school years.cite web| |title=From zero to superhero |url= |accessmonthday=June 29|accessyear=2006] Routh has also noted that during his younger years, he was fond of the Superman films and comic books.cite web |work=The Beacon Journal |title=Superman passes cape; boots still hard to fill |url= |accessmonthday=July 11|accessyear=2006]

Routh attended the University of Iowa for a year, aspiring to be a writer. During this time, he modelled and acted in order to earn his tuition fee. Routh has said that he was often told that he bore a physical resemblance to Christopher Reeve, who had previously portrayed Superman. His former manager signed him on because of the resemblance, telling him that he thought Routh would be cast as Superman if there was another film in the series.

Early career

In 1999, Routh left the University and moved to New York City and then Los Angeles, where he pursued a full-time acting career, first appearing as an extra in Christina Aguilera's music video for "What a Girl Wants". He was cast in his first major role in 1999, in an episode of the short-lived ABC television series, "Odd Man Out". In 2000, he had a four-episode role on the third season of MTV's nighttime soap opera, "Undressed". Routh subsequently appeared on the WB's "Gilmore Girls" (in a February 2001 episode, "Concert Interupptus", playing an attendee of a Bangles concert), and earned steady work on the soap opera "One Life to Live", playing Seth Anderson from May 23, 2001 until April 17, 2002.

Routh's later primetime credits include guest roles on CBS's "Cold Case", NBC's "Will & Grace" and Fox's short-lived series, "Oliver Beene". During this time, he worked as a bartender at a popular bowling alley in Hollywood, Lucky Strike Lanes, and shared an apartment with his sister.cite web | |title=Word of Routh |url=,10221,19529253-7485,00.html |accessmonthday=June 19|accessyear=2006]

uperman role

Prior to Routh's casting as Superman, Warner Bros. had spent over a decade developing a plan to relaunch the franchise, with possible stars including name actors Nicolas Cage, Josh Hartnett, Brendan Fraser, Paul Walker, James Marsden, Ashton Kutcher, and Jim Caviezel and planned directors including Tim Burton, Wolfgang Petersen, Joseph McGinty Nichol, Brett Ratner and Shekhar Kapur. When director Bryan Singer came aboard the project, however, he insisted that an unknown actor be cast in the part, in the tradition of the casting of the best-known film Superman, Christopher Reeve.

Routh, then 24, had previously already auditioned for director McG and was spotted by Singer after he viewed Routh's videotaped audition. Singer, who since noted Routh as being the embodiment of "our collective memory of Superman",cite web |work=MovieHole |title=Interview : Superman Returns cast & crew |url= |accessmonthday=July 3|accessyear=2006] was impressed by his resemblance to the comic book icon and found the actor's humble Mid-western roots perfect for the role, as well as his "combination of vulnerability and confidence" that Singer said reminded him of Christopher Reeve. Singer decided to cast Routh after the two met on August 13, 2004, but did not tell Routh until two months later, when Routh's casting was announced in October 2004, making him an "instant celebrity". Before filming began, Routh bulked-up for the role, gaining 22 pounds to reach approximately 215 pounds. Filming for "Superman Returns" began in Sydney in February 2005. The film was released in the U.S. on June 28, 2006 and was a box-office success, grossing $200 million in the US. [cite web |url= |title=Superman Returns |accessdate=2008-10-11 |] Routh has already signed on to appear in two potential sequels to the film.

Routh has commented that he feared his performance would too closely resemble that of Christopher Reeve. Routh has said that he hopes to "remind people of Christopher while at the same time making them feel like they're seeing a totally new Superman".cite web |work=Bizarre Online |title=Superman's return fear |url= |accessmonthday=June 21|accessyear=2006] Reviews of Routh's performance were generally positive, with "Newsweek" noting that he "effortlessly lays claim to the iconic role".cite web |work=The |title=Superman charms critics |url= |accessmonthday=June 21 |accessyear=2006] On the other hand, film critic Roger Ebert noted that he thinks "Routh lacks charisma as Superman, and I suppose as Clark Kent, he isn't supposed to have any".cite web | |title=Superman Returns (PG-13) |url= |accessmonthday=July 1|accessyear=2006]

At the 2006 Spike TV Awards, Brandon Routh won the award of "Best Superhero" as Superman in "Superman Returns", beating out among others, Christian Bale as Batman and Hugh Jackman as Wolverine.

Current projects

After the release of "Superman Returns", Routh signed on to play CIA agent John Clark in "Without Remorse" under the direction of John Singleton with a screenplay by Stuart Beattie. Routh would be the 3rd actor to portray the character after Willem Dafoe and Liev Schreiber. The film was intended for a late-2007/early-2008 release. However, Paramount Pictures recently put the film into turnaround. Routh's future participation on the project is unknown.

Routh recently wrapped filming in the ensemble film "Life is Hot in Cracktown" and stars in the independent drama "Fling" (formerly titled "Lie to Me") co-starring his wife Courtney Ford.

Routh was signed to star in "The Informers," a film based on the Bret Easton Ellis novel of the same name. He joins Kim Basinger, Amber Heard, and Billy Bob Thornton, [cite web |title=Billy Bob and Kim Basinger Joining The Informers |publisher=Not An Exit |url= |date=August 30, 2007 |accessdate=2008-10-10] but his scenes ended up scapped with the decision to excise the "vampire" subplot from the film entirely.cite news |author=Kaleem Aftab |url= |title=Exclusive: Undead Removed From Informers |publisher=IGN UK|date=2008-3-10|accessdate=2008-03-30]

He has signed to play Dylan Dog in the 2008 film "Dead of Night". [imdb title |id=tt1013860 |title=Dead of Night (2008)] The movie is based on the Italian comic series created by Tiziano Sclavi.

At Comic Con 2008, it was revealed that Routh has a cameo in the upcoming Kevin Smith comedy "Zack and Miri Make a Porno" and will serve as a judge on Platinum Studio's 2008 Comic Book Challenge.

In August 2008, Warner Bros. officially announced they intended to reboot the Superman franchise due to the sucess of Batman. Routh was set to return as Superman in the reboot. [cite web |url= |title=Exclusive: DC Comics President Gives Superman Update | |date=October 11, 2008 |accessdate=2008-10-11]

Personal life

On August 23, 2006, Brandon became engaged to his girlfriend of 2½ years, actress Courtney Ford; [cite web | |title=About Brandon |url= |accessmonthday=January 6 |accessyear=2007] the couple married on November 24, 2007 at the El Capitan Ranch in Santa Barbara. [cite web | |title=Superman Returns Star Brandon Routh Gets Married |url=,,20161615,00.html?xid=rss-topheadlines |accessmonthday=November 25|accessyear=2007] Among the guests were Bryan Singer, Kevin Spacey, Kate Bosworth, Ashley Olsen, Martin Spanjers and Winona Ryder.

He knew actor Kal Penn, a co-star in "Superman Returns", for several years during the time he lived in Los Angeles.cite web |work=Premiere |title=Superman Returns |url= |accessmonthday=July 12|accessyear=2006] Routh and Penn were both also featured in the The Lonely Island's "Awesometown" MTV pilot music video, "The Avon Lady".

Routh's sister, Sara, has a musical track entitled "You're Never Gone" on "Sound of Superman", the companion soundtrack of the film.

Routh is a fan and player of the video game "World of Warcraft".cite web |work=FiringSquad |title=Superman Plays World of Warcraft? Yep. |url= |accessmonthday=July 10 |accessyear=2006]




Video games

*"Superman Returns" (2006) (voice) Superman/Clark Kent


External links

* [ Official website] - includes monthly Q+A with Brandon
*imdb name|id=0746125|name=Brandon Routh
* [ Interview]

NAME= Routh, Brandon James
SHORT DESCRIPTION= Actor, plays Superman
DATE OF BIRTH=October 9, 1979
PLACE OF BIRTH=Des Moines, Iowa

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