It has been said that trying to cast DC character Superman in a major live-action Hollywood film has some troubles and potential consequences. Christopher Reeve was iconic, but the sequels deteriorated in quality, he was typecast, and later rendered a quadriplegic. Brandon Routh in 2006, continuing from where Reeve left off, was decent enough, but Warner Bros. Pictures was unimpressed with the box-office take and rebooted again in 2013 with Henry Cavill. Cavill’s “Man of Steel” became the foundation of the DC Extended franchise that peaked with last year’s “Justice League”, also starring Cavill. But that may be the last.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Warner Bros. Pictures may be of a mind to finally retire Henry Cavill in the role of Superman. This intent apparently sprang from a recent breakdown in negotiations between the studio and the actor’s representatives at WME in order to have Cavill make a cameo in character as the Man of Steel on “Shazam!”, the first known film for the DC Extended Universe in 2019. The reason for Cavill not appearing was due to a scheduling conflict with the actor having signed on for a program on Netflix. But that may be enough for Warner to end any future roles.
The studio also has a second reason for this possible course: Warner-DC does not think a Superman movie series with sequels every other year or so is not maintainable. One source from Warner remarks, “Superman is like James Bond, and after a certain run you have to look at new actors.” An official statement Warner Bros. adds, “We have a great relationship and great respect for Henry Cavill that continues to remain unchanged. Additionally we have made no current decisions regarding any upcoming Superman films.”
Henry Cavill was very recently part of Paramount Pictures and Tom Cruise’s latest “Mission: Impossible” film installment “Fallout”, which premiered this past July. The Netflix original series that he is working on next, which thus leaves him no time for the “Shazam!” cameo, is an adaptation of the hit PC action RPG “The Witcher”. In the meantime, Warner-DC is busy conceptualizing a new big-screen adaptation of Supergirl, which already runs as a TV series starring Melissa Benoist and will start its fourth season on The CW. This is part of the studio’s ongoing attempts to further vitalize the DCEU, which has yet to match the box-office power of rival MCU.
Alongside Cavill, also on his way out of the Warner-DC film franchise is Ben Affleck, who portrayed Bruce Wayne/Batman on 2016’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and “Justice League”, plus a cameo on “Suicide Squad”. The next DC Extended Universe movie, “Aquaman” starring Jason Momoa, premieres on December 21.
Image courtesy of Fox News