What just happened? Henry Cavill has revealed he will not be returning as Superman. The news comes just months after being told by DC Studios to announce that he would be reprising his role as the Man of Steel (and following the Black Adam cameo). The studio's new co-chairman James Gunn tweeted that a new Superman story was in the works that focuses on the earlier parts of the character's life, so Cavill won't be playing the part.
It was only seven weeks ago when Cavill posted he was "back" as Superman following his brief appearance in Black Adam. Soon afterward, the British actor announced he would be leaving Netflix's The Witcher series after season 3, which arrives next summer, with Liam Hemsworth taking on the role of Geralt of Rivia. Cavill never gave his reasons for leaving, though it was assumed filming Superman would have led to scheduling conflicts with the series.
But it appears Cavill might have waved goodbye to the White Wolf a little prematurely. "It's sad news, everyone. I will, after all, not be returning as Superman. After being told by the studio to announce my return back in October, prior to their hire, this news isn't the easiest, but that's life," Cavill wrote in an Instagram post. "I respect that James and Peter have a universe to build. I wish them and all involved with the new universe the best of luck, and the happiest of fortunes."
Gunn confirmed the news on Twitter. The Guardians of the Galaxy director said that he and co-chairman Peter Safran have a slate of DC projects ready to go, including the Superman movie, which he confirmed isn't another origin story—reports say it will focus on his younger years as a reporter at the Daily Planet in Metropolis. Gunn is writing, but a director has not yet been found.
But we just had a great meeting with Henry and we're big fans and we talked about a number of exciting possibilities to work together in the future.— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) December 15, 2022
Just six days before Gunn and Safran took on their roles at DC Studios on November 1, Cavill said in an interview he was "very excited" about Gunn being hired.
There have been rumors that Gunn doesn't like Cavill. When asked if he would address these claims, he tweeted, "Sure: false." YouTuber and Podcaster Joshua Luca, who runs The Den of Nerds, replied: "Even more ppl have reached out to me since you said this to tell me you really don't like him. Just saying what I heard." That brought a less-than-friendly response from Gunn.
"So weird. You seem so plugged in! Anyway, I just had forty people reach out to me to say you just got kicked out of your Mom's basement. So sorry, man."
The news comes soon after Patty Jenkins spoke out over the cancellation of the third Wonder Woman movie. The director said she never walked away from the project, and that Wonder Woman 3 may not move forward under the new DC Studio bosses.