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"I'm afraid this is goodbye. And every time we say goodbye, you die a little."
―Anatoli Knyazev to Martha Kent[src]

Anatoli Knyazev was a Russian arms dealer, human trafficker, and mercenary who was employed by Lex Luthor.


Early Life[]

Anatoli Knyazev was born in Moscow on February 24, 1975.

Nairomi Incident[]

"This is a man who knows things."
Bruce Wayne[src]

Anatoli was working in Nairomi, Africa for a warlord who kidnapped Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen. He intercepted Jimmy's camera, finding a tracking device. Following the orders of their real employer, Lex Luthor, Anatoli and his men killed the warlord and all of the warlord's henchmen and destroyed the compound with Superman arriving soon after, throwing public perception against him, as many were left to suspect he was somehow involved in the deaths and the destruction.[1]

Meeting Bruce Wayne[]

He later returned to the United States, where he attended an underground fight, losing money. After the fight, Anatoli briefly conversed with Bruce Wayne, where the latter successfully cloned his phone and later used it to discover that Anatoli worked for Luthor. Lois came to the same conclusion after investigating evidence from innovative alloy bullets used by him and his men, made specifically for them by LexCorp.[1]

Assassination of Kahina Ziri[]

Anatoli stalked Kahina Ziri to an underground train station in Metropolis where Kahina was waiting for a train. As the train approached, Anatoli pushed her into the train's path, killing her.[1]

Kidnapping of Martha Kent[]

"I'll kill her! Believe me, I'll do it!"
"I believe you."
―Knyazev's standoff with Batman[src]

Anatoli was given another mission by Luthor, having his men take Martha Kent hostage while posing as a janitor named Clay in order to kidnap Lois. He brought her to Lex before returning to Martha, with direct orders to burn her to death in one hour unless Luthor contacted him and ordered otherwise.

Unknown to Luthor, Batman broke into the warehouse where Anatoli was keeping Martha, and quickly dispatched his men inside. As Batman made his way towards them, Knyazev lit the flamethrower, threatening to kill Martha. Batman, however, shot his gas tank, rescuing Martha in Knyazev's confusion, leaving the mercenary to die from the explosion.[1]


"Good luck for one is always his brother's misfortune."
―Anatoli Knyazev to Bruce Wayne[src]

Anatoli Knyazev was a ruthlessly cruel and malevolent man, completely obedient to the orders of his employer Lex Luthor, being more than willing to commit atrocities (such as to indirectly murder Cesar Santos and Jimmy Olsen, directly murder Kahina Ziri and many other Nairomians, as well as to burn Martha Kent alive) if ordered and payed by the latter to do so. Knyazev was also a bit cowardly as he was terrified when Batman prepared to kill him.


  • Expert marksman: Knyazev is a highly skilled marksman, personalty dispatching most of the Nairomian terrorists in rapid succession.
  • Expert infiltrator: Knyazev is highly skilled in infiltration, managing to easily get himself and his men employed by the Nairomian warlord Amajagh (in order to help frame Superman in an international incident) without the latter ever suspecting his true motives, and to later pose as a janitor in a building (in order to capture Lois Lane).
"Contacts all over the globe, but he's based out of the port of Gotham."
Batman to Alfred Pennyworth, regarding Knyazev's connections[src]
  • Expert networker: Knyazev superbly uses his criminal connections to help his further the ambitions of his boss Lex Luthor. Hence, he notably smuggled in a Kryptonite nugget into the United States of America (to a LexCorp facility), and later used his connections to Gotham City's criminal underworld to have Blackgate Penitentiary inmates murder Cesar Santos in prison, without it getting either tied to him.
  • Bilingualism: Knyazev, apart from his native Russian, also speaks fluent English, albeit with a slight Slavic accent.


  • Heckler & Koch USP45: Anatoli used this weapon to kill several of General Amajagh's militants in Nairomi. Some of his henchmen also used this during the warehouse fight with Batman
  • Flamethrower: Knyazev's primary weapon, used to burn the corpses of the Nairomian terrorists (incriminating Superman), and the device with which he intended to kill Martha Kent.






  • In the DC Comics universe, Knyazev was a villain known as KGBeast who was a trained assassin and master of martial arts. KGBeast was also cybernetically enhanced and mastered the use of every deadly weapon known to man.
  • Callan Mulvey was the first actor to appear in both the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the DC Extended Universe. He previously appeared as Jack Rollins, a HYDRA thug, in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.
  • In a Facebook post in 2017, Jim Starlin, creator of the original character, said that he had been paid significantly more for Knyasev's appearance in BvS when compared to Marvel's payment to him for the appearances of Drax, Gamora and Thanos in their respective cinematic appearances at the time.[1]

Behind the Scenes[]

  • Tim Connolly was a stunt double for Callan Mulvey in the role of Anatoli Knyazev.
  • According to The Suicide Squad director James Gunn, KGBeast was one of many comic villain characters considered for inclusion in the film.[2]
    • In the days before this post, Gunn demonstrated a keen understanding of the DCEU and its characters, implying that if he had used KGBeast he would not have forgotten about Knyazev's existence in the universe and injuries in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.


External Links[]

The DC Extended Universe Wiki has a collection of images and media related to Anatoli Knyazev.