Superman (1978) Poster


Gene Hackman: Lex Luthor



  • Lex Luthor : Some people can read War and Peace and come away thinking it's a simple adventure story. Others can read the ingredients on a chewing gum wrapper and unlock the secrets of the universe.

  • Lex Luthor : We all have our little faults. Mine's in California.

  • Lex Luthor : [to Otis]  Do you know why the number two hundred is so vitally descriptive to both you and me? It's your weight and my I.Q.

  • Superman : Is that how a warped brain like yours gets its kicks? By planning the death of innocent people?

    Lex Luthor : No, by causing the death of innocent people.

  • [Watching Otis approaching the hideout] 

    Lex Luthor : It's amazing that brain can generate enough power to keep those legs moving.

  • Lex Luthor : [to Otis]  You were followed again.

    [Otis spins around, knocking over a lamp] 

    Lex Luthor : spite of those catlike reflexes.

  • Lex Luthor : Look at that overgrown boy scout, Miss Teschmacher. Tell me what you see.

    Miss Teschmacher : Cuteness... Dimples.

    Lex Luthor : You like cuteness, huh? You like dimples? I'll give you dimples.

    [He turns machine guns on Superman, who isn't even fazed] 

    Lex Luthor : The pressure is still on you, Superman. You know what they say - "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the tunnel".

    [He turns flamethrowers on Superman, who still isn't fazed] 

    Lex Luthor : This is your last chance, Superman. Why don't you do yourself a flavor and freeze?

    [He freezes Superman solid, but the Man of Steel breaks free] 

  • Lex Luthor : [Superman thinks he has found the detonator with which to stop Luthor's missiles]  Don't touch that!

    [Superman opens the lead box, but instead of a detonator... ] 

    Lex Luthor : Ha ha, I told you. It's kryptonite, Superman. A little souvenir from the old hometown. I've spared no expense to make you feel right at home.

  • [Lex stands on his library sliding ladder searching for a book] 

    Lex Luthor : n... n... n...

    Otis : 'M'! You want 'M' Mr. Luthor?

    [Otis moves the sliding ladder Lex is standing on, leaving Lex hanging from a shelf] 

    Otis : So, there you go, 'M'.

    Lex Luthor : 'M' as in moron Otis? No, no, no, it's 'N'! 'N' as in neanderthal, nincompoop, nitwit and 'L' as in ladder!

  • Lex Luthor : You were great in your day, Superman. But it just stands to reason, when it came time to cash in your chips, this old... diseased... maniac would be your banker.

  • [Otis tells Lex how he's inputted the coordinates on the missile] 

    Lex Luthor : Otis! The third one was to be 11, and the fourth one, seven!

    Otis : Oh. Oh, gee. Aw, gee. Gee, Mr. Luthor. Oh, I see. I guess my arm wasn't long enough, see?

    Lex Luthor : Otis, would you like to see a long arm? Otis, would you like to see a very, very long arm?

    Otis : Oh, no, Mr. Luthor.

  • Lex Luthor : Miss Teschmacher, when I was six years old my father said to me...

    Miss Teschmacher : "Get out!"

    Lex Luthor : [laughing]  Before that. He said, "Son, stocks may rise and fall, utilities and transportation systems may collapse. People are no damn good, but they will always need land and they will pay through the nose to get it! Remember," my father said...

    Otis : "... land."

    Lex Luthor : Right. It's a pity he couldn't see from such humble beginnings how I've created this empire.

    Miss Teschmacher : An empire? This?

    Lex Luthor : Miss Teschmacher, how many girls do you know who have a Park Avenue address like this one?

    Miss Teschmacher : [sarcastically]  A Park Avenue address? Two hundred feet below?

    Lex Luthor : Do you realize what people are shelling out up there, for a few miserable rooms off a common elevator?

    Lex Luthor , Otis : What more could anyone ask?

  • Lex Luthor : There's a strong streak of good in you, Superman. But then nobody's perfect... almost nobody.

  • Lex Luthor : Otis, is that the newspaper I asked you to get me?

    Otis : Yeah.

    Lex Luthor : Why am I not reading it?

    Otis : [thinks for a second]  'Cause I haven't given it to you yet?

    Lex Luthor : [smiles]  Right...

    [snatches the newspaper from Otis' hand] 

  • [repeated line] 

    Lex Luthor : [shouting]  Miss Teschmacher!

  • [pointing to a map of California and the San Andreas Fault] 

    Lex Luthor : Everything west of this line is the richest, most expensive real estate in the world: San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco. Everything on THIS side of the line is just hundreds and hundreds of miles of worthless desert land, which just so happens to be owned by...

    [Whacks Otis with his pointer] 

    Otis : Uh... Lex Luthor Incorporated.

    Lex Luthor : Now, call me foolish, call me irresponsible, but it occurs to me that a 500 megaton bomb planted at just the proper point would...

    Superman : Would destroy most of California. Millions of innocent people would be killed. The west coast as we know it would...

    Lex Luthor : Fall into the sea.

    Lex Luthor : [Gives a little wave with his hand]  Bye-bye, California. Hello, new west coast. *My* west coast.

    [Otis overlays map with new map] 

    Lex Luthor : Costa Del Lex. Luthorville. Marina Del Lex. Otisburg... Otisburg?

    Otis : Miss Teschmacher... she's got her own place.

    [indicates "Teschmacher Peaks"] 

    Lex Luthor : *Otisburg*?

    Otis : It's a little bitty place.

    Lex Luthor : [Angry]  *OTISBURG*?

    Otis : Okay, I'll just wipe it off.

    [Erases Otisburg] 

  • Lex Luthor : This is Lex Luthor. Only one thing alive with less than four legs can hear this frequency, Superman, and that's you.

  • Lex Luthor : [swimming in the pool, listening to news broadcasts about Superman]  Miss Teschmacher! Turn it off.

    Miss Teschmacher : [lying by the sunlamps]  Lex, what's the story on this guy? Do you think it's the genuine article?

    Lex Luthor : If he is, he's not from this world.

    Miss Teschmacher : Why?

    Lex Luthor : Because, if any human being were going to perpetrate such a fantastic hoax, it would have been me! Otis! My robe!

    Otis : Right away, Mr. Luthor!

    Lex Luthor : It all fits somehow, his coming here to Metropolis. And at this particular time. There's a kind of cruel justice about it. I mean, to commit the crime of the century, a man would naturally want to face the challenge of the century.

    Otis : Listen, Mr. Luthor, maybe this guy that flies is just sort of passing through, you know?

    Lex Luthor : [Lex gets out of the pool, and stops at the top step. Otis starts helping Lex on with the robe as the bottom of it proceeds to get soaked]  Passing through? Not on your life Otis. Which I would gladly sacrifice, by the way, for the opportunity of destroying everything that he represents. And, Otis, by the way, next time put my robe on *after* I'm out of the pool.

  • Lex Luthor : [in Luthor's underground hideout]  Miss Teschmacher, how many girls do you know who have a Park Avenue address like this one?

    Miss Teschmacher : [sarcastically]  Park Avenue address? Two hundred feet *below*?

  • Miss Teschmacher : Tell me something, Lex, why do so many people have to die for the crime of the century?

    Lex Luthor : Why? You ask why? Why does the phone always ring when you're in the bathtub?

    [walking away] 

    Lex Luthor : *Why* is the most diabolical leader of our time surrounding himself with total nincompoops?

    Otis : I'm back, Mr. Luthor!

    Lex Luthor : Yes, I was just talking about you.

  • Superman : You don't even care where the other missile is headed, do you?

    Lex Luthor : Certainly I do. I know exactly where it's headed. Hackensack, New Jersey.

    [he pushes Superman into the pool] 

  • [Superman appears in Luthor's office] 

    Lex Luthor : Otis, take the gentleman's cape.

    [Superman glares] 

    Otis : I don't think he wants me to, Mr. Luthor.

  • [the warden of a prison is sitting in his office when he hears the alarms sound & the guard dogs barking. He steps onto his balcony to see Superman flying into the prison yard, holding Luthor & Otis by the scruff of their jackets] 

    Lex Luthor : You're messing up my suit, you lummox, you!

    Lex Luthor : [to Superman]  Watch the ground!

    [They land with a start. Luthor & Otis are immediately cornered by the guards] 

    Superman : Good evening, Warden. I think these 2 men should be safe here with you now till they can get a fair trial.

    Warden : Who is it, Superman?

    Lex Luthor : [Lex rips off his wig to reveal his bald head]  Lex Luthor! The greatest criminal mind of our time!

    Otis : [repeating what Lex says]  ... Of our time!

    Lex Luthor : I hereby serve notice...

    Otis : He's serving notice to you...

    Lex Luthor : That these walls...

    Otis : That these walls here...

    Lex Luthor : Will you shut up, please!

    Superman : [to the guards]  All right, take them away, boys!

    [the guards take Luthor & Otis to a cell] 

    Lex Luthor : [shouting at Otis as the guards lead them away]  Neanderthal! Nitwit! Nincompoop!

  • Miss Teschmacher : [looking at Lex's newspaper]  A meteorite found in Addis Ababa. Uh, I know I'm gonna get rapped in the mouth for this, but... So what?

    Lex Luthor : So what. You mean, to us, they're just meteorites. Fair enough. But the level of *specific* radioactivity is so high, to anyone from the planet Krypton, this substance is *lethal*!

    Otis : Wait a minute, Mr. Luthor. You mean, fire and bullets can't hurt this guy, but this stuff here...

    Miss Teschmacher , Otis : [in unison]  ... will kill him!

    Lex Luthor : Doesn't it give you, like, a shudder of electricity... to be in the same room with me?

    Miss Teschmacher : [laughs]  Not like the shudder *you're* gonna get when you try to lay that rock on him. He can see you coming for miles with those super-peepers of his.

    Lex Luthor : [obviously, he's already thought of this]  "Oh, Lord... You gave them eyes, yet they cannot see." Nor can Superman, through lead.

    Miss Teschmacher : [understanding]  He... can't... see... through... lead!

    Lex Luthor : And Kryptonite will destroy him. Any questions, class?

  • [Lex switches on the remote door, pushing the police officer into the subway train's path killing him] 

    Miss Teschmacher : Sick. You're really sick.

    Lex Luthor : Sick, Miss Teschmacher? Sick, when I'm mere days from executing the crime of the century? No, no, no, no. Step away from that, please. How do you choose to congratulate the greatest criminal mind of our time? Huh? Huh? You tell me than I'm brilliant? Oh, no, no, that would be too obvious, I grant you. Charismatic. Fiendishly gifted, uh...

    Miss Teschmacher : Try "twisted."

  • Lex Luthor : [DELETED SCENE: at his underground manor, Luthor is playing the piano and singing]  "You must've been a beautiful baby, you must've been a wonderful child; when you were only startin' to go to kindergarten, you must've drove the little boys wild; And when it came to winning blue ribbons, you must've shown the other kids how; I can see the judge's eyes, when he handed you the prize, you must've made the cutest bow; Yeah, you must've been a beautiful baby... 'Cause, baby, look at you now."

    [He looks over at Eve T., who is about to be fed to Lex's "babies"] 

    Miss Teschmacher : [in tears]  You can't do this to me...! Why, Lex? WHY?

    Lex Luthor : Because I love you, Miss Teschmacher.

    [He signals for Otis to drop Eve, which the henchman does. Then a familiar blue-and-red streak follows her down... and reappears, depositing Eve safely on the floor] 

    Superman : By the way, Miss Teschmacher, your mother sends her love.

    [He gazes over at Luthor, who sighs in defeat] 

  • Lex Luthor : The San Andreas Fault. Maybe you've heard of it?

    Superman : Yes, it's the joining together of two land masses. The fault line is unstable and shifting, which is why you get earthquakes in California from time to time.

    Lex Luthor : [beams]  Wonderful. Couldn't have said it better myself.

  • Clark Kent : [bursts into Luthor's underground lair by breaking down the door] 

    Lex Luthor : It's open, come in.

See also

Release Dates | Official Sites | Company Credits | Filming & Production | Technical Specs

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