Michael Shannon on turning down a ‘Star Wars’ role

Lloyd Bishop/NBC

Michael Shannon, known for his role in The Flash, recently shared his decision to decline an undisclosed role in the Star Wars franchise back in 2016.

“I’m always a bit wary about those giant movies. Because they take a lot of time and I don’t find them very stimulating to work on,” the acclaimed actor said in a print interview with Empire Magazine, according to Entertainment Weekly.

“I don’t ever want to get stuck in a franchise. I don’t find them interesting and I don’t want to perpetuate them,” he continued. “If I’m making something, I want there to be some kind of purpose to it — I don’t want to make mindless entertainment. The world doesn’t need more mindless entertainment. We’re inundated with it.”

Although Shannon’s stance may seem contradictory, considering his involvement in the DC Extended Universe as General Zod in Man of Steel and The Flash, he clarified that joining the DC franchise was different. He viewed Man of Steel as a story with relevance at the time, exploring the consequences of a civilization destroying its own planet and seeking refuge elsewhere.

“When you hear that hypothetically, if we destroy the Earth, we might go live on Mars — It’s the same thing,” he said. “I didn’t look at Zod as a villain. I just saw him as a guy whose job is to protect his people.”

Shannon added that when he originally took the role in Man of Steel he saw it as a “one and done” project and was “pretty shocked to hear about this reprisal of the role.”

“But I like the story that The Flash is telling and I wasn’t there for a long amount of time — I was just there a couple of weeks — so it didn’t break my back to do it,” he shared.

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