After weeks of fielding rumors about what he (and producing partner Peter Safran) might or might not do with their new leadership of Warner Bros. Discovery’s DC Studios, James Gunn has announced his first concrete project as studio head: He’s writing a Superman movie—without Henry Cavill in the title role.
This is per Gunn’s own social media account, where he revealed that he’s been working on the script for the film for a while now, describing it as a movie “focusing on an earlier part of Superman’s life”—hence the lack of Cavill in the lead role. “But,” Gunn wrote, “We just had a great meeting with Henry and we’re big fans and we talked about a number of exciting possibilities to work together in the future.”
It’s interesting to see Gunn moving into what certainly sounds like “origin story” territory here, since the modern DC movie universe kicked itself off with a Supes origin, Zack Snyder’s 2013 franchise-starter Man Of Steel. The obvious question here is whether Gunn’s film will incorporate any of the material from the Snyder movie—including the memorable moment when Superman’s dad feeds himself to a tornado to teach his son a lesson about some damn thing—or whether Gunn and his team will be actively building a new version of the character.
Gunn noted that no director has yet been tapped to handle the film. (It seems unlikely that he’ll be taking on the job himself, given the demands of his new duties.) He did reveal that the Superman movie is only the first of a whole “slate” of films that he and Safran have developed, with news about the rest of the movies apparently arriving “at the beginning of the new year.”
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Update: Cavill has made his own post about the news, confirming both that he was asked by the studio to announce his return to the role of Superman back in October (around when his cameo appearance in Black Adam hit theaters) but that he recently had a meeting with Gunn and Safran in which they confirmed that “my turn to wear the cape has passed.”