Things are heating up in Metropolis as James Gunn, co-head of DC Studios, has announced that he is writing a new feature film about Superman. In line with the new project, Gunn has also revealed that Henry Cavill will not be returning as a hero.
“Peter and I have a working DC board, which we couldn’t be happier about; At the beginning of the new year, we will be able to share some exciting information about our first projects with you,” says the director-turned-label boss tweeted Wednesday evening.
“Among those on the board is Superman. In the early stages, our story will focus on an earlier part of Superman’s life, so the character will not be played by Henry Cavill. But we just had a great meeting with Henry and we’re huge fans and we’ve talked about a number of exciting opportunities to work together in the future.”
Sources near DC said diversity that Gunn, his co-president Peter Safran, and Cavill have recently met and are all energized to find something in the comic book universe for Cavill to grapple with.
Cavill confirmed in a statement shared on Instagram that he would not be reprising the role of Superman.
“It’s sad news, everyone. After all, I won’t be returning as Superman. After being told by the studio to announce my return in October prior to their hiring, this message isn’t the easiest of messages, but such is life,” Cavill wrote. “I respect that James and Peter have to build a universe. I wish them and everyone involved with the new universe the best of luck and happiness.”
Gunn has been working on the new Superman storyline for some time, insiders say. The script focuses on the character’s life as a young reporter in the fictional city of Metropolis. Audiences will catch glimpses of him as he meets key figures like colleague Lois Lane, insiders added. Additionally, diversity Sources said that the new Gunn project will not replace JJ Abrams-Ta-Nehisi Coates’ previously announced Superman concept (which is still in active development).
Cavill isn’t the only star from the last DC era to team up with Gunn and Safran. Ben Affleck – who has played Batman in numerous films for the label – recently met with the pair to specifically discuss the prospect of directing an upcoming DC feature, according to people familiar with those talks.
The Superman news comes after a week of headlines after Warner Bros. decided not to proceed with a new Wonder Woman film starring Patty Jenkins. On Tuesday, Jenkins tweeted a lengthy statement saying she was “open to considering anything asked of me” regarding a potential third project that was scrapped. Shortly thereafter, Gunn responded with support, telling Jenkins on Twitter, “I can attest that all of Peter’s and my interactions with you have been nothing but pleasant and professional.”
As Gunn said Monday, more details on the reimagined DC Universe are expected to be revealed in January.