Everyone thought Henry Cavill’s future with the live-action DC Universe was over. Replacing him with faceless actors, as seen in Peacemaker and Shazam, or simply using archival footage so as not to violate any contracts, was the route Warner Brothers took for its Superman in the DCEU. Fortunately, the winds of fortune have changed, and many fans, including myself, can now sigh in relief, thanks to the latest update from Henry Cavill himself.
Rough journey of Henry Cavill’s Superman
We had to wait quite a long time before it was announced that Henry Cavill would be the next Man Of Steel. The producers’ first choice for the role of Clark Kent was Matt Bomer the voiced Superman in some animated projects, who now plays Negative Man in DC’s Doom Patrol on HBO Max.
When Cavill was officially announced I was really happy that they found someone like him for the lead role of such a classic character. He was not as readily known at the time, but I knew him from The Count of Monte Cristo and Stardust. He may not have had leading roles in those films, but he was nevertheless a very recognizable actor even then.
Cavill’s incarnation of Superman was completely different from the first moment we saw him. He wasn’t a happy and hopeful hero, but more of a man in hiding and trying to live a normal life, who doesn’t need to use his powers and lets the people of Earth solve their own problems.
This version of Clark Kent was taught by his father (Kevin Costner) that he can’t use his powers because people aren’t ready for his appearance. He must be a symbol of hope when there is no hope, a nod to the Superman character whenever he appears on the screen or in comic books.
In my opinion, Cavill’s Superman is one of the best, especially because of Man of Steel and Zack Snyder’s Justice League story arcs. When we look at Superman, we see a man who inspires hope and lets people know they will be safe. It doesn’t matter if his suit is black and white or classic red and blue, it’s the man inside that counts.
Past, present, and future of DCEU Superman
When Zack Snyder left 2017’s Justice League for personal reasons, both Cavill’s future and that of other characters in the DCEU came into question. Cavill signed on with Paramount Pictures to star in Mission Impossible: Fallout and only managed to return as Superman, but with the infamous mustache. After that, there seemed to be no plans to include Superman anywhere, so he signed a deal with Netflix to star in the major series The Witcher, which has since grown in popularity.
Robert Meyer Burnett of The Post-Geek Singularity reported what his sources had to say about what caused Henry Cavill’s Superman to be put on ice for a time.
“Now this very highly placed source at the studio… or works with the studio… this person told me that when they were trying to get Henry Cavill to cameo in that movie, that his manager said, ‘Look, he had more contractual obligations, more appearances as Superman on the books. But if he appeared in a cameo as Superman, that would count as one of Henry Cavill’s contracted appearances in a movie as Superman.’ This was Henry Cavill’s manager who said this. Interestingly enough, that manager is also Dwayne Johnson’s ex-wife and his manager as well.
As a result of that, because he wouldn’t play ball with the studio, he was playing hardball, Toby Emmerich, who was running Warner Bros. at the time said, ‘Henry Cavill is now persona non grata, he’s not gonna play ball with the studio? He will never be Superman again.’” (quote via The Direct)
Maybe this is the real reason, maybe not, but certainly, Cavill’s return to the role of the Man of Steel has been very difficult, and in the long run, it will be a triumphant and dignified return. We all know that Henry Cavill is a big fan of pop culture, and not just DC, but World of Warcraft, The Witcher, and other franchises to name. If he’s fixated on something, he’ll give 200% to make each person happy, which is why we love him so much.
According to Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s statement and Henry Cavill’s official statement on his Instagram, we can safely assume that Cavill is returning as Superman in the DCEU. It was The Rock who helped make it happen, as he knocked and smashed doors just to fight for Cavill’s return. Now after his not-so-secret cameo we can officially prepare for more of his appearances by Cavill as Superman, likely including a sequel to Man of Steel and Dwayne Johnson himself has expressed a lot of support behind doing a Black Adam Vs Superman film.
Producer Hiram Garcia shared this striking image on his Twitter, welcoming Henry Cavill back to his Superhero role.
I’ve been fortunate in my career to capture some special images but this one definitely ranks at the top!
— Hiram Garcia (@hhgarcia41) October 24, 2022
As Cavill stated in his Instagram post “I wanted to give you all the chance to watch Black Adam. But now that plenty of you have, I wanted to make it official that I am back as Superman. And the image you see on this post and what you saw in Black Adam is just a very small taste of things to come. So there’s a lot to be thankful for, and I’ll get to that in time. But I want to thank you guys most of all, thank you for your support and thank you for your patience. I promise it will be rewarded.”
When The Rock said that the power hierarchy in the DC universe would change, many people thought it was just a joke or a promotional quote to get people hyped about Black Adam. Now we can easily see it that this was not the case.
Are you excited to have Henry Cavill back as Superman? What do you want to see happen in a future Superman film? Let us know on The Cosmic Circus Discord or on social media!