The Oscar-nominee will play Perry White, the curmudgeonly editor of the Daily Planet, the paper where Supes' alter-ego Clark Kent churns out copy.
Filming on Warner Bros. and Legendary Pictures' big-budget reboot started on Monday.
Zack Snyder ("300") is directing. Henry Cavill ("The Tudors") will play the tights-wearing superhero, Amy Adams ("Doubt") has been tapped to play Lois Lane, and Russell Crowe, Kevin Costner and Diane Lane will play Superman's real and adopted parents.
Fishburne is best known for his Academy Award nominated work as Ike Turner in the biopic "What's Love Got to Do With It" and for anchoring the "Matrix" franchise as Morpheus. He recently left the CBS procedural "CSI."
"Man of Steel" flies into theaters in June 2013.