Joe Manganiello to Play Deathstroke in Ben Affleck’s Batman Film

TheWrap first reported Deathstroke would be the main villain

“True Blood” and “Magic Mike” star Joe Manganiello will play the deadly villain Deathstroke in Ben Affleck‘s solo Batman film.

The casting, as first reported by the Wall Street Journal, comes after TheWrap confirmed Deathstroke, a brilliant and deadly assassin, would be the lead villain in the Warner Bros. film. But until Thursday, who would play him was a mystery.

DC Entertainment president and chief creative officer Geoff Johns confirmed the casting in an interview with the Journal.

On Aug. 29, Affleck posted a cryptic tweet of Deathstroke walking ominously toward the camera, which set of a frenzy of speculation.

In 2009, Deathstroke was ranked as IGN’s 32nd greatest comic book villain of all time. Deathstroke, also known as Deathstroke the Terminator or simply Slade, is known to be the greatest assassin in all of DC Comics. He has encountered Batman on several occasions in the comics, beginning in the 1991 Deathstroke standalone DC comic.

In the story arc “City of Assassins” Deathstroke pounded Batman to a bloody pulp. Whether that will also happen in Affleck’s Batman film, which does not yet have a release date, remains to be seen.

Affleck took up the Bat-cowl in this summer’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” as well as in “Suicide Squad,” and will don the Batsuit again in next year’s “Justice League.”

Johns declined to tell the Journal whether Manganiello will cameo in the film featuring Batman teaming up with a number of other heroes, including Wonder Woman, The Flash and Aquaman.