Henry Cavill Stars In A Fantasy Epic That’s Now A Max Streaming Hit

By Phillip Moyer | Updated

Henry Cavill immortals
Henry Cavill in Immortals

Henry Cavill might be best known for playing Geralt of Rivia The Witcher, and playing Superman in the pre-James-Gunn DC universe, but those aren’t the only memorable roles that the 40-year-old actor has played. Before either of those properties was released, Cavill starred in the 2011 epic swords-and-sandals fantasy Immortals — a movie now available on Max. According to FlixPatrol, this forgotten fantasy is making something of a comeback as of late.

Henry Cavill stars in Immortals, a surprising box office hit from 2011 that loosely follows Greek mythology.

Immortals found its way to Max on July 1, after previously being hosted on Hulu in late January of this year. The Henry Cavill fantasy film has spent eight days in the streaming service’s top ten films, staying steady in the #3 spot in the U.S. for the past six days.

This is a higher ranking than the film ever reached on Hulu — according to FlixPatrol, the movie topped out in the #7 spot on January 27 and 28 before staying in the #9 spot for the next 23 days.

In Immortals, Henry Cavill plays Theseus, the mythological founder of the Greek city-state of Athens.

The movie pretty much ignores the actual mythology surrounding Theseus, instead pitting him against King Hyperion, who is on a quest to find the legendary Epirus Bow and unleash the Titans imprisoned beneath Mount Tartarus — an action that would almost certainly doom all of mankind. Since the gods don’t want Mankind dead, Zeus endeavors to train Theseus to help him defeat the genocidal king.

Henry Cavill wasn’t the only major star to appear in Immortals. Mickey Rourke, best known for his roles in The Wrestler, Sin City, and Angel Heart, plays the villainous King Hyperion.

Mickey Rourke
Mickey Rourke in Immortals

Critics had a mixed reaction to Immortals, giving the Henry Cavill epic a 49% on Rotten Tomatoes. While critics universally enjoyed the action and special effects, which were reminiscent of the much-better-received film 300, many complained that the movie’s writing was sub-par.

However, distaste for the film was far from universal — the movie made it on the list of 2011’s best films from multiple sources, including MTV, Toro Magazine, Glasgow To the Movies, and Are You Screening.

Immortals was Henry Cavill’s first major theaterical release.

Audiences had a much better reception to the film, with CinemaScore giving the film a rating of “B” from the average viewer and a B+ from viewers under the age of 25.

This audience appreciation helped the movie at the box office, resulting in a worldwide box office return of $227 million off of a $75 million budget. The movie went on to earn an estimated $36 million in DVD and Blu-ray sales.

While it’s not a particularly well-remembered film nowadays, the success of Immortals proved to Hollywood that Henry Cavill had what it takes to play a leading role in a big-budget blockbuster movie.

Before its release, Cavill had never had a leading role — the closest he came was second billing in the 2006 direct-to-video movie Red Riding Hood, playing the huntsman. Since then, Cavill has become a household name.


The year after Immortals was released, Henry Cavill starred alongside Bruce Willis in the thriller The Cold Light of Day — a movie that was almost universally reviled by critics and audiences alike, though it made about $30 million on a $20 million budget after DVD sales.

Then, Cavill’s big break came with Zach Snyder’s Man of Steel — a film that led to the beginning of the so-called Snyderverse and cemented Cavill in the role of Superman for the next nine years.

Henry Cavill’s performance in Man of Steel proved that audiences still had an appetite for Superman movies, earning $668 million off of a budget of $224-258 million.

Henry Cavill broke out as Superman, then found success again on the big screen in Mission Impossible: Fallout.

This came after the much-more-disappointing box office earnings for Superman Returns, which was released in 2006. Cavill would go on to play Superman in Batman v Superman: Dawn of JusticeJustice League, and Black Adam before James Gunn decided to remove him from the role for the upcoming Superman: Legacy.

For those wondering what Henry Cavill was up to before he was Superman, there’s no better place to start than Immortals. As a high-octane feast for the eyes, the film is well worth a look for subscribers of Max.

If you don’t subscribe to Max, chances are it’ll switch services again in a few months, so don’t feel too left out.