There’s been plenty of buzz in the past month about the DCEU and, more specifically, Henry Cavill’s uncharted future in it. It seemed for a while that in the upheaval and new direction with the franchise post-Justice League that Cavill was out as contract negotiations broke down and it was even rumored that Michael B. Jordan might replace him.
But with the announcement that the mythical Snyder Cut of Justice League is coming to HBO Max next year (after $20-30 million in reshoots, ADR and VFX work), we knew we’d be seeing him as the Big Blue Boy Scout at least once more. A report from May that Cavill and Warner Bros. had restarted talks for him to appear in the DCEU again rekindled our hopes that that might not be all.
Cavill, who has been vocal about having future plans for the character, has added recent fuel to that fire in a recent one-on-one interview with Patrick Stewart for Variety‘s Actors on Actors series. Not only does he want to keep playing Superman, he said, but he also explained how playing the character has changed him:
“I’ve always been a fan of Superman. With a character like that, you carry the mantle with you off set. And it becomes part of your public representation. When you meet children, children don’t necessarily see me as Henry Cavill, but they might see Superman, and there’s a responsibility which comes with that. Because it’s such a wonderful character, it’s actually a responsibility I’m happy to have, and I hope that I get to play more of Superman in years to come.”
Cavill then went on to say that playing Superman has “taught [him] a lot about [him]self,” simply because the responsibility of playing the character has forced him to look inside at the man he himself is:
“He’s so good, he’s so kind, and when you start to compare yourself to him, because you’re playing him, you start to really look inwards. You say, ‘Am I a good person? Can I be a good enough person to play Superman?’ And if you ever hear a whisper in there which is like, ‘Hmm, hold on a second. Maybe not,’ then you adjust it, and you make sure you are a better person. I think that’s all we can do in life.”
The comments are remarkably similar to what we’ve heard from Marvel actor Chris Evans over the years, who has often said playing Captain America has changed him, and made him a better man.
Evans has said that playing a character as good and noble as Steve Rogers for so long has made him look at how he approaches the world differently, from cutting down on his swearing so as not to let down a kid to examining how he might handle certain challenges better. “You start to look at your own conflicts and circumstances through the eyes of someone who might handle it better than you would,” he said to Movieweb last year.
It’s refreshing to hear this from both Cavill and Evans. So often we hear stories about how playing tortured characters or villains sent actors to dark places in their heads and impacted them negatively, the most infamous recent example, of course, being Heath Ledger as Joker. It’s easy to forget that playing honorable, inspiring characters can have a positive effect on actors, too. The personal anecdotes from the DC and Marvel stars is a nice reminder to us that the good, constructive stories of roles changing actors are just as valuable and important as the salacious ones.
In meantime, if you want a laugh, check out Henry Cavill’s delightful Instagram story of being bested by a mini pony.