Exclusive: James Gunn Spoke With Henry Cavill About Playing Someone Other Than Superman In New DC Universe

James Gunn wants Henry Cavill back in the DCU, but not as Superman.

By Nathan Kamal | Updated

james gunn henry cavill

DC Studios head James Gunn has met with Henry Cavill about the possibility of him playing a different character than Superman in the upcoming slate of DC Universe projects. According to our trusted and proven sources, the former Witcher actor might still have a role in the DCU, just not as Superman. That is a pretty wild pitch from James Gunn and it is still unclear whether Henry Cavill is willing to take a swing at it.

To sum up one of the biggest shake-ups in pop culture in a decade or so, the sudden announcement that James Gunn was taking over DC Studio (and Peter Safran on the business side of things) resulted in some massive changes to DC movies, including the departure of Henry Cavill as Superman. After nearly a decade of portraying the Kryptonian/Kansasian superhero and being teed up to battle Dwayne Johnson’s Black Adam, the Mission: Impossible actor was suddenly out. 

James Gunn then pretty quickly announced that the DCU’s immediate priority was Superman: Legacy, a movie that will recast the character with a new, younger actor (who will definitely not be Henry Cavill). Regardless, it seems the director wants Cavill for some other project, which raises a lot of possibilities as to whom. Our immediate guess: Frankenstein’s Monster.

Superman as Frankenstein’s Monster

While Frankenstein’s Monster (who, for the purposes of brevity, we will refer to simply as Frankenstein, regardless of nomenclature debate) is not often thought of as a DC character in the same way as Batman or Wonder Woman, he has been a staple of DC Comics for nearly as long, first appearing in an issue of Detective Comics in 1948. Most importantly for James Gunn’s purposes, he has been frequently associated with the Creature Commandos for some time.

The Creature Commandos, a ragtag group of paramilitary soldiers in World War II, has been announced as one of the upcoming DC Universe projects in the “Gods & Monsters” first wave. Specifically, James Gunn confirmed an animated HBO Max series starring the group is in the works and that casting is nearly complete, which means that Henry Cavill might have jumped back on board. 

Interestingly, this is not the only Frankenstein project that Henry Cavill has been rumored to be in talks for; we recently reported that the actor is in negotiations with Universal Pictures for a reboot of its most iconic monster property. However, if James Gunn is trying to get Henry Cavill as Frankenstein, it could be an easy gig for the actor, essentially just doing sepulchral voice work as a living, reconstructed corpse.

However, James Gunn has some competition when it comes to locking Henry Cavill down for a gig right now. While the actor has lost his Superman and Witcher gigs, he is also in discussions to join Sony as Spider-UK, team up with Robert Downey Jr. for Sherlock Holmes 3, the cursed Star Trek 4, and maybe even the briefest of returns as Superman in The Flash. He’s a busy guy, in other words.