Is Tyler Hoechlin The Smallest Actor to Ever Play Superman?

Many actors have inherited Superman’s mantle to do the character justice. They all brought something personal to the roles that each made their interpretation of Superman unique. Teen Wolf alum Tyler Hoechlin is the latest star to put on the S, and has gotten rave reviews for his part as the Man of Steel.

Although he’s certainly helped the character reach new heights in terms of storytelling, how does Hoechlin compare to other larger-than-life actors who became Superman?

Tyler Hoechlin got into acting so he could buy video games

Tyler Hoechlin smiling
Tyler Hoechlin | Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Some stars knew they were going to be actors since they were kids. For Hoechlin, however, his first passion was baseball.

“I played literally from the time I can remember,” Hoechlin told Empire. “My dad had played, my older brother played, so I always wanted to be like my older brother. That just kind of was a natural thing that I fell into.”

For Hoechlin, it was baseball that was his birthright since it ran in the family. Acting was just something that came by accident.

“I was at home and my mom for some reason had brought up that I had been in commercials when I was a baby. I had no recollection of this. At the time, I was, like, seven or eight years old, and I brought up, ‘Oh, that’d be kind of cool to go and make my own money so I could buy my own video games.’”

But how Hoechlin truly got into acting, he feels, was more fate than happenstance. He was on his way to a baseball game in Moreno Valley when his coach called, telling Hoechlin that the game had been canceled due to a rain-out.

“Which we had never had in Moreno Valley,” Hoechlin recalled. “I played in Moreno Valley through high school, so in the span of ten, eleven years I played there, I think I might have had two games rained out.”

Hoechlin described the incident as, “that fate moment.”

Afterward, Hoechlin and his mother agreed to audition for an acting class he’d been offered to go to. Six months later, he acquired an agent. On his fifth audition, Hoechlin got his first job as an actor, which subsequently took him on a long journey to becoming the Man of Tomorrow.

Is Tyler Hoechlin the smallest Superman?

Tyler Hoechlin measures at 5 feet, 11 and ¾ inches according to This is just a hair taller than the smallest Superman to date, Dean Cain, who stands at 5 feet, 11 and ½ inches. In comparison to the rest of his predecessors, however, most of them stand at 6 feet. His most recent predecessor in Henry Cavill is just an inch or so taller than Hoechlin at 6 feet and some change.

Celebheights lists Christopher Reeve as the tallest actor to play Superman, standing at 6 feet 3 inches at his peak.

Tyler Hoechlin had very little exposure to Superman prior to taking the role

For Hoechlin, getting Superman’s coveted role wasn’t particularly difficult. The Supergirl show-runners and producers were going to bring Superman to the hit TV series, and they had their sights already set on Hoechlin.

“Honestly, it was the strangest thing – there wasn’t an audition. I had a great meeting with executive producers Greg Berlanti and Andrew Kreisberg in June,” Hoechlin told Entertainment Weekly. “Halfway through, they brought up the idea of introducing Superman to the show and asked if I’d be interested. I said, ‘Yeah, absolutely. I’m obviously a fan.’ I believe that was on a Monday. On Friday, we got a call with the offer, so it was very quick.”

But Hoechlin’s exposure to Superman was limited, allowing the actor to weave his own personality into the role without worrying about the influences of Supermen before him. In an interview with Glitter, Hoechlin commented on how much his unfamiliarity with past Supermen helped his own performance.

“So, for me, I’ve kind of stayed away from anything just because it’s a lot easier for me to show up to work and have the instinct to do something and not have to run through the big catalog like, ‘Wait, did so and so do that….’ or …’did they not do that?’ It’s just way easier to for me to just be instinctual and follow that and commit to what feels right.”

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