Superman Recruits Diary of a Wimpy Kid's Neva Howell to Play Martha Kent

Why did you say that name?!

Neva Howell, a character actor recognizable for her roles in movies like Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul and Logan Lucky, has reportedly joined the cast of James Gunn's Superman in the role of Martha Kent. Word of Ma Kent's casting comes just a day after news that Pruitt Taylor Vince (Constantine) will be playing Jonathan ("Pa") Kent in the upcoming movie, which stars David Corenswet as Clark Kent/Superman and Rachel Brosnahan as Lois Lane. The movie is currently in production, with a planned release next summer.

TheWrap, who also first reported Vince's casting, broke the news. Gunn, who responds to rumors more often than most filmmakers on social media, has yet to comment on either casting, but Pruitt Taylor Vince shared one of the articles of his casting to Instagram, seemingly confirming that report.

Martha Kent was previously played onscreen by Phyllis Thaxter in Superman: The Movie, Eva Marie Saint in Superman Returns, and Diane Lane in the DC Extended Universe. Annette O'Toole, Helen Slater, K Callan, Kari Wahlgren, and Swoosie Kurtz are among the actors who have played Ma Kent over the years on the small screen.

Superman stars David Corenswet as the title character, with Rachel Brosnahan as Lois Lane. The movie has just started production in earnest, giving it about a year and a half from the first day of filming until its theatrical release. That's roughly in line with Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3, which started production in November of 2021 and was released in April of last year.

Little is known about the story of Superman, other than that it will involve a version of Superman who is settled into his role as the world's protector, but who also has a network of allies to fall back on. Gotham's Anthony Carrigan is set to appear in the movie as Metamorpho, and other superheroes in the film include Hawkgirl (Isabela Merced), Guy Gardner (Nathan Fillion), and Mister Terrific (Edi Gathegi). The Wire and Jack Ryan star Wendell Pierce will play Perry White.  Superman's origin story, already shown in a number of prior film adaptations, won't take up a significant amount of real estate in Legacy, according to prior statements from Gunn. 

Gunn is lining up some familiar talent on the project, with cinematographer Henry Braham (The Suicide SquadGuardians of the Galaxy vol. 3); production designer Beth Mickle (The Suicide SquadGuardians of the Galaxy vol. 3); costume designer Judianna Makovsky (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's StoneAvengers: Endgame); and art director David Scott (Godzilla: King of the MonstersSpider-Man: No Way Home). Casting is by Yellowstone and Oppenheimer's John Papsidera.