In the case of Henry Cavill and the fate of his Superman on film, should’ve/could’ve/would’ve wins this time.
And I’m not a big fan of should’ve/could’ve/would’ve.
In July 2013 at Comic Con International San Diego, Warner Bros., Davis Goyer, and MAN OF STEEL director Zack Snyder announced that the sequel to MAN OF STEEL — which had been released just a month-ish earlier — was going to include Batman.
Hell, they even had a super-cool logo ready to go (see above, but yeah, they had to change the date)!
Once word broke out of this monumental event in DC cinematic history, a conga line broke out and proceeded down San Diego’s 5th Ave. into and through the Gaslamp Quarter. Rumor has it that oblivious with joy, the party didn’t stop ’til the line realized that they were in La Jolla.
The fun continued for the next two years…until BATMAN v SUPERMAN hit theaters.
THAT is when the fun ended and the conga lines came to a dead F’n stop.
Like it (and I do) or not, MOS set up a potential great Superman film. By the end of that movie, Clark Kent was well on his way to becoming the Superman we all know and love. Amy Adams’ Lois Lane welcoming Cavill’s Clark to the PLANET (which was a great line with a clever double meaning), at the end was a perfect set up for MOS2.
But alas, a true MAN OF STEEL 2 (with Brainiac as the villain perhaps?) wasn’t meant to be.
Well, it was meant — err, intended — to be…until MAN OF STEEL didn’t perform as well at the box office as “they” expected.
Though the conga lines came to an end in March of 2016, the death knell for Henry Cavill’s Superman sounded almost three years prior, not with Cavill’s CGI’ed clean-shaven face in JUSTICE LEAGUE, and not even in September of 2018.
No, that took place the moment MOS2 was hijacked and WB shook their superhero moneymaker — Batman — and injected him into what would become BATMAN v SUPERMAN.
Anyone really think BvS was a true and proper Superman sequel to MOS?
Well, if you consider Cavill being forced to play a morose, very un-Superman Superman with only 43 lines of dialogue, and second fiddle to Ben Affleck (who got top billing) as Batman to boot, then yeah, I guess it is.
And they killed him off too!
But nah, it doesn’t and it ain’t no proper sequel to MOS…neither is JUSTICE LEAGUE. (And for the sake of my sanity, I won’t even get started on how they crappy Superman was treated in that film!)
Bottom line, I don’t think WB is interested in making a new Superman film anytime soon.
Well, despite the fact that Cavill makes a damn good Superman, this version of the character is tainted just like Ben Affleck’s Batman. There’s just too much BvS/JL stink on Cavill to give his Superman another go. What other reason would WB have for letting Superman on film to go on an extended hiatus?
(Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman is Teflon and hasn’t been affected by the BvS/JL fiasco/bad mojo. The jury’s still out on AQUAMAN, and we’ll find out it’s fate in December. As far as Batman on film? Well, Batman is BATMAN.)
Yes, I know that Cavill’s manger tweeted out an “everything is fine” message right after the trades reported that he was done as Superman. I also know that WB issued a very ambiguous statement (I called it!) in response to the story breaking. And of course, I know that Cavill himself posted a silent (and kinda weird) video of himself on his Instagram. Regardless…
NONE OF THAT MATTERS!
Frankly, it’s all PR and damage control…and maybe some negotiating in public (which neither side should be doing if that’s the case).
RELATED: “In Support of Superman (and Superman Fans)“
Maybe the two sides will work it out and Cavill will once again don the blue tights and red cape. If that happened, I’d get a conga line going myself.
But sadly, I don’t think Cavill will ever play Superman again.
I hope I’m wrong, but I’m probably (and sadly) not.
The path to where we’re at now with Cavill, Superman on film, and poor state of DC on film overall started with a very bad decision in the Summer of 2013.
Should’ve/could’ve/would’ve? – Bill “Jett” Ramey