Two years after departing the role, Henry Cavill is in talks to once again portray Clark Kent/Superman in films based on DC Comics, insiders with knowledge of the situation told TheWrap.
The extent of Cavill’s return to the role — whether just for additional work to be done for the upcoming “Snyder Cut” of “Justice League” or for appearances in future films — has not been disclosed.
The British actor first appeared as the superhero in 2013’s “Man of Steel,” followed in 2016 by “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and in 2017 by “Justice League.” He was set for further appearances in DC Comics movies, including a planned cameo in “Shazam!” but was instead abruptly let go from the job in late Summer, 2018.
At the time, insiders said Warner Bros. was rethinking its strategy for DC Comics movies, moving away from the shared universe approach and toward standalone films. And indeed, just a few months after Cavill departed, so did Batman actor Ben Affleck, and the planned standalone “The Batman” was retooled to focus on a younger version of the character played by Robert Pattison.
However, the larger context was that up to that point, with the exception of “Wonder Woman,” DC’s attempt to create a competitor for the Marvel Cinematic Universe was a critical dud. And while the movies weren’t flops, each one, again with the exception of “Wonder Woman,” earned less than the previous installment. But “Justice League” suffered from particularly public problems. In May, 2017, several months into post production — and just six months away from release — director Zack Snyder stepped away from the film after his daughter died, and WB hired “The Avengers” director Joss Whedon to ‘finish’ it.
Whedon oversaw not just post production work however, but also weeks of unscheduled reshoots involving the entire main cast, and a recut that appears to have dramatically changed the original story. The end result was a confusing and often ridiculed movie featuring an unintentionally hilarious looking Superman, thanks to the fact that Cavill had grown a mustache for another film and the CG used to edit the mustache out of “Justice League” only kind of worked.
Things change, however. At the end of 2018, “Aquaman” became a billion dollar juggernaut, while 2019’s “Shazam!” and 2020’s “Birds of Prey” were both critically acclaimed cult hits. But more relevantly, DC movie fans coalesced around the social media movement “Release the Snyder Cut,” which sought to pressure WB into releasing a version of “Justice League” much closer to whatever it is that Snyder had in mind.
Those efforts paid off last week when WB announced that something they’re at least calling “The Snyder Cut” will premiere in 2021 on the company’s upcoming streaming service, HBO Max. No word how Cavill will be involved but hopefully this time they lock down being clean shaven into his contract.
Cavill currently stars in Netflix’s “The Witcher” and plays the role of Geralt of Rivia.
Cavill is repped by WME, manager Dany Garcia of the Garcia Companies and Gang, Tyre, Ramer and Brown.