Terrence Stamp, the original General Zod, talks ‘Man of Steel’

Terrence Stamp played General Zod in "Superman II." In the corner box, here is what he looks like today.
Terrence Stamp played General Zod in “Superman II.” In the corner box, here is what he looks like today.

In his storied, 50-year career as an actor, Terence Stamp has had few roles as memorable as the villainous General Zod in 1980′s “Superman II,” directed by Richard Donner. And while Zod plays a major part in Zack Snyder’s update on the Superman story, “Man of Steel” (played this time by Michael Shannon), Stamp worries the new film won’t measure up.

“I’m kind of sad, but to be honest with you. I think Dick Donner’s Superman movies were the benchmark, really,” says Stamp, who cautions that he hasn’t seen “Man of Steel” yet — and probably won’t. “I mean, every kind of comic book movie of that genre took from those first two Superman movies, you know? So I would be very surprised if it was as funny and as sophisticated. But then the youth of today is not interested in that. I think if Donner’s movie came out now, it wouldn’t be as charming as it was then.”

Stamp remains proud of the work he did for Donner taking on Christopher Reeve’s Superman, which is good since the legacy won’t be leaving him anytime soon. “I mean, in London, there’s never a day that passes that somebody doesn’t come up to me and say, ‘Kneel before Zod.’ And they’re all about 45,” he says with a laugh.


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