It’s a bird, it’s plane … it’s Henry Cavill, your new Superman

27-year-old British actor Henry Cavill has been cast as Clark Kent/Superman in the newest film incarnation of the comic world’s most iconic figure from director Zack Snyder (“300,” “Watchmen”). Cavill basically fits the description of a 28- to 32-year-old “discovery, or an actor from TV who isn’t yet a big star” that Warner Bros. was reportedly seeking for the part.

Cavill would be most widely recognized for playing Charles Brandon on “The Tudors.” His most notable film roles have been parts in “Stardust,” “Whatever Works” and one of my personal favorites, the 2002 version of “The Count of Monte Cristo,” one of his first roles.

If this is the first you’ve heard of the newest crack at creating a cinematic “Superman” worthy of a 21st Century audience, let’s catch you up to speed. If you’re a “Superman” fan, you recall that 2006’s “Superman Returns” from “X-Men” director Bryan Singer failed to reinvigorate the franchise. Well, Warner Bros. decided that it was also not happy with the finished product either. For a good couple years, the future of the Man of Steel on the silver screen was in serious doubt. Warner Bros. would eventually act because it owns the rights at the moment and would piss a lot of money away sitting on them, but only over the last not even year or so has the studio begun to put a plan in place — and what a plan.

Warner Bros. hired Christopher Nolan, the “Inception” and “The Dark Knight” filmmaker who revitalized Batman for the studio back in 2005 with “Batman Begins,” to serve as a producer on the project and “godfather” it. Together with “The Dark Knight” writer David S. Goyer, the two envisioned a story that Goyer eventually turned into a script. Last summer, Nolan, “Dark Knight” producer Charles Roven and others recruited “300” director and major fanboy favorite Zack Snyder, a master of visually stylized filmmaker, to direct. In the several months since, my guess is a lot of pre-production talks and style choices have been made as scouts looked near and far for the right guy to don the red cape and emblazoned “S.”

With Nolan on board and Snyder at the helm, expectations are extremely high for the new Superman, especially after the disappointment of “Superman Returns.” Rumors have floated around about what kind of story Nolan and Goyer dreamed up, but the sense has been that it won’t be a traditional origin story and might focus heavily on Clark Kent’s decision to become Superman and embrace the hero he is destined to be. All sorts of articles I once read are running through my head right now, but I believe the goal for the new Supes involves making him a 21st Century hero. Of all the renowned superheroes, none has been more stuck in the Cold War era than Superman. The red and blue spandex and fighting for “truth, justice and the American way” is a tough bit of lore to recapture in a non-cheesy way this side of the millennium marker. That’s partly why the WB’s “Smallville” as been essentially a 10-year-long origin story that has found no compelling reason to put star Tom Welling in a cape (or have him even fly for that matter).

Like every superhero casting, Cavill will likely cause some controversy, especially not being American, but he certainly sports the look. What do you think? The currently untitled “Superman” film is scheduled to release in December 2012. and will begin filming in the next few months.


You can be the first one to leave a comment.

Leave a Comment