Henry Cavill, who has played Superman in three films, is parting ways with Warner Bros., sources tell The Hollywood Reporter . Though neither side is confirming, the British actor, who first donned the blue suit for 2013’s Man of Steel, and then starred in 2016’s Batman v. Superman and last year’s Justice League , is said to be hanging up the red cape.
Their explanation is weird:
Warners had been trying to enlist Cavill, who most recently co-starred in Mission: Impossible — Fallout , for a Superman cameo in Shazam! , which stars Zachary Levi and will bow April 5. But contract talks between Cavill’s WME reps and Warners broke down, and the door is now closing on other potential Superman appearances.
That’s because the studio has shifted its focus to a Supergirl movie, which will be an origin story featuring a teen superheroine. This effectively removes an actor of Cavill’s age from the storyline’s equation given that Superman, aka Kal-El, would be an infant, according to DC lore.
I literally don’t believe that’s the reason he’s done. It may be legitimate scheduling issues, and it may be Cavill just also wants out of the franchise, but there’s no way DC decided to get rid of the character of Superman as an adult just because they’re working on a Supergirl movie. She’s been younger that Clark in the comics and other media for decades, she’s younger on the Supergirl television show right now. They handwave it away as her escape ship from Krypton being bounced around and taking the long way to Earth, keeping her in stasis longer so that by the time she lands on Earth, Kal-El is already an adult.
I think Cavill just wants out. I’m not sure if that’s a studio spin (which would still be in the context of leaked info, nothing official), or speculation from the people breaking the story, but the Supergirl excuse doesn’t add up. Without more to the story, or knowing where that explanation came from, it makes the whole rumor a little harder to believe.
“Superman is like James Bond, and after a certain run you have to look at new actors," says a studio source. As such, Cavill will join Ben Affleck, who isn’t expected to reprise his role for director Matt Reeves’ forthcoming Batman stand-alone film, as a hero on the way out.
But if that quote is accurate, it does sound like he’s really on the way out, whether it’s related to Supergirl or not.