Henry Cavill is set to hang up his cape as Superman for the DC Extended Universe, sources claim.
The Man of Steel actor has been in the role since his first film for the DCEU dating back to 2013.
Superman has been a life-changing role for Cavill, whose biggest previous work was a supporting role in The Count of Monte Cristo movie and Showtime series, The Tutors.
Superman allowed him to become one of the hottest actors in Hollywood, and led to him taking on a big role in movies like The Man from U.N.C.L.E. and more recently Mission Impossible-Fallout.
Netflix also took notice and he is soon set to star as Geralt of Rivia in the streaming giant’s The Witcher.
But with reports claiming his days as Superman are coming to an end, what went wrong?
Henry Cavill leaves as part of a major DCEU shake-up
According to The Hollywood Reporter, it seems Cavill and the studio could not agree on an appearance in the upcoming Shazam! film.
They reportedly wanted him to make a cameo but scheduling conflicts led to the deal collapsing.
However, there are rumors that money also got in the way, with the biggest hurdle being that Cavill’s reps, WME, unable to agree to a new deal for him to return in upcoming Superman-related projects.
When Cavill got a role in The Witcher, many felt that might get in the way of him playing Superman.
However, he is only doing eight episodes of this for Netflix so he’d still easily be able to take part in upcoming films to play Superman.
The issue seems to be how often DC would likely need to use him over the next few years.
What also seems likely is that Warner Bros. wants to change the course of their universe. Superman and Batman are likely to be recast, with the possibility of other roles also seeing a change.
Warner Bros. reportedly plans to focus on their upcoming Supergirl, which feature her on Krypton as a teenager.
This means Superman would not exist yet and the Supergirl actress would have to be integrated into the existing DCEU when the character comes to Earth.
The shake-up changes a lot of plans and could remove a number of actors
A source told The Hollywood Reporter: “Superman is like James Bond, and after a certain run you have to look at new actors.” This is a fair point to bring up.
Ben Affleck also appears to be out as Batman, which certainly sets up a huge problem in the DCEU. With its two main people gone, who will replace them? Will they want to go younger? If so, how do you bring them in?
The news could very well see DC push their planned 2020 release of The Flashpoint Paradox story up in order to solve the problem.
There are currently no plans to remove Gal Gadot, Jason Momoa, Will Smith, Margot Robbie, Joe Manganiello, Jared Leto, Ray Fisher, Ezra Miller, or most anyone else barring the big two mentioned above. Flashpoint could give them an excuse and a proper way to make the changes.
This planned reset could be a smart move for Warner Bros. Industry sources have quoted Warner executives previously saying they did not care about the quality of the films, so long as people bought them or went to theaters.
A shake-up could help change that attitude, and provide a big boost for the DCEU.
Warner Bros. plans for Superman, Wonder Woman, Batman and other heroes and their films
Warner Bros. has several films ahead and it does look like they’ll go ahead with most of them. Superman and Batman were not expected to be in a solo movie of their own until at least 2020 or 2021. Birds of Prey, Suicide Squad 2, Green Lantern solo, as well as several others, are expected along with Supergirl in the next few years.
A reset of the universe gives them a chance to start over, but changing the actors in every area would be hard. Henry Cavill and Ben Affleck might be done, but their parts can always be recast.
Does that mean we should remove the wonderful Gal Gadot, Margot Robbie, or Jason Momoa from the roles that they were great in? Of course not. Yet there must be an adequate excuse in the team-up films for any change
Warner Bros. still plans on a Justice League Part II movie. Though it was going to be happening in 2019 at one point, it was pushed up to at least 2020. With Cavill and Affleck both out, this could delay the movie even longer.
It could also push up the dates for a Batman and Superman solo project. Matt Reeves is doing the Batman project that was likely going to film next year. This could still happen, but it’s also likely we see a small shift in the script to bring in a new Batman.
As of now, there is no one set in the role to play The Dark Knight. However, it does appear Warner Bros. wants to get younger. With all the upcoming projects Superman and Batman will be attached to going forward, this seems like a good plan. But who will play them?