Henry Cavill Starred In A Huge Horror Franchise, Watch It Now If You Missed it

Before he was Superman or Geralt, Henry Cavill starred in Hellraiser: Hellworld, the eight film in the iconic horror franchise.

By Sean Thiessen | Published

henry cavill

Before he took to the skies as Superman in DC’s Man of Steel or battled monsters as Geralt in Netflix’s adaptation of The Witcher, Henry Cavill squared off with Pinhead in a Hellraiser film. Hellraiser: Hellworld was released straight to home video in 2005 and marks an early credit in Cavill’s career. The eighth film in the iconic Hellraiser franchise is streaming now on HBO Max.

In a meta twist, Hellraiser: Hellworld follows a group of gamers obsessed with Hellworld, an online MMORPG inspired by the mythos of Hellraiser. After the death of one of their close friends, the grieving group attends a mysterious, invite-only party themed after Hellraiser that turns out to be a murderous scheme that puts the twenty-somethings up against Cenobite demons Pinhead, Chatterer, and Bound. Henry Cavill plays Mike, one of the unfortunate souls who must survive a night with the sadistic creatures of Hellraiser.

The film was the third and final Hellraiser film directed by Rick Bota, who also helmed Hellraiser: Hellseeker and Hellraiser: Deader in the early 2000s. Henry Cavill was joined in Hellworld by Doug Bradley in the actor’s final appearance in the Hellraiser franchise as the iconic Pinhead. Bradley was replaced in two subsequent sequels before the role was taken over by Sense8 actress Jamie Clayton for Hulu’s 2022 reboot of the franchise; Clayton’s takeover marked the first time Pinhead (officially called The Priest in the 2022 film) has been portrayed by a female.

Hellraiser: Hellworld was not originally intended to be part of the Hellraiser franchise. The film was adapted from a short story by author Joel Soisson called Dark Can’t Breathe and then retooled as a Hellraiser film. Before Henry Cavill joined the Hellraiser franchise, his biggest film was The Count of Monte Cristo in 2002.

hellraiser doug bradley
Doug Bradley as the classic Hellraiser villain, Pinhead

Henry Cavill appeared in Matthew Vaughn’s fantasy comedy Stardust two years after Hellraiser: Hellworld, and then in the Greek mythology action flick Immortals in 2011. It wasn’t until 2013 that Cavill truly broke out with his appearance as Superman in Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel. His tenure as the most powerful hero on the DC roster has been rocky to say the least, but with the recent appointment of James Gunn and Peter Safran as co-heads of DC films, Cavill’s time as the Big Blue Boy Scout seems to have finally come to an end.

The announcement came mere weeks after Netflix disclosed that Cavill would be replaced by Liam Hemsworth in the fourth season of The Witcher. Some speculated that Cavill left the role of Geralt in order to accommodate an anticipated busy schedule as Superman, while others maintain that the actor, who is an outspoken fan of The Witcher franchise’s source material, was displeased with the way the show has been handled. As Henry Cavill departs his most famous franchises, and with a return to the world of Hellraiser unlikely, fans of the actor still have plenty of Cavill action to look forward to.

Cavill will star in Matthew Vaughn’s 2023 spy adventure Argylle, with more action roles rumored to be on the way. Until he hits the big screen again, fans can dig deep into the Henry Cavill catalog to catch the actor in Hellraiser: Hellworld, streaming now on HBO Max.