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If you were holding out for the return of Lex Luthor in Smallville‘s two-hour finale, prepare for disappointment: Entertainment Weekly reports that Michael Rosenbaum has refused repeated offers to reprise the role in the show’s final episode.
According to “a knowledgeable source,” the 38-year-old Rosenbaum, who left the series in 2008, “has put the show behind him and moved on. […] By all indications, he is not going to be involved.”
The final three episodes haven’t been shot yet, so there’s still a chance that Rosenbaum and the show’s producers could reach an agreement, but at this point things don’t look promising.
As recently as July, Smallville star and Executive Producer Tom Welling indicated he’d been lobbying for Rosenbaum’s return, which he viewed as critical to the show’s finale.
“I’ve twisted his arm, I’ve taken him to dinner, I’ve gotten him drunk … I’ve tried to get him to sign papers that he didn’t know what they were … so, I’m trying everything that I can,” Welling told KryptonSite during Comic-Con International. “Michael wants to come back, but there are just some things to iron out, and I think he understands that we can’t end the show without Lex Luthor. We’re even teasing the idea that he’s going to be on already, with the idea of clones, or [the idea] that Lex has developed these bodies that he could then tap into to heal himself later in life.”
The CW had no comment on Entertainment Weeky‘s report. Smallville ends its 10 season-run on May 13.
Update: Rosenbaum has announced he will return for the show’s finale: “I’m simply doing it for all of the fans out there who made Smallville the great success it is.”