Henry Cavill will not be returning to his role as Geralt of Rivia in Netflix series The Witcher, despite being dropped as Superman after a shake-up at Warner Bros.
Cavill played Geralt for three seasons but confirmed he would be leaving the Netflix series in October, with the Australian actor Liam Hemsworth stepping into the lead role.
Shortly after, Cavill announced he would return as Superman in Warner Bros’ DC Universe. It was widely speculated he had left The Witcher in order to commit to a training regime to play the hero, a role he has held since the 2013 film Man of Steel.
But on Wednesday, just weeks after announcing his return, it was revealed that Cavill had been dropped from the role. Director and writer James Gunn, who joined DC Studios as co-chair with Peter Safran, announced he was writing a new Superman movie focussing on a younger version of the hero that would not include Cavill.
“It’s sad news, everyone. I will, after all, not be returning as Superman,” Cavill wrote on Instagram after the announcement. “After being told by the studio to announce my return back in October, prior to their hire, this news isn’t the easiest, but that’s life.”
On Thursday, Netflix confirmed that season four of The Witcher is continuing with Hemsworth as Geralt. The third season, the last to star Cavill, will air in the middle of next year.
Fans were outspoken when the recasting was announced, with many voicing their displeasure at the change. Cavill was widely praised for his performance as Geralt, and is an avid fan of Andrzej Sapkowski’s books and the games on which the show is based.
“Henry is an extraordinary Geralt and I think Liam will continue and also be an extraordinary Geralt,” Netflix’s head of US and Canada scripted series Peter Friedlander said in an interview earlier this month. “There has been a legacy of amazing, iconic characters where the actors have changed and we’re hugely optimistic about this.”
Hemsworth said he was “over the moon“ to take over the role.
Gunn’s new Superman film will reportedly follow a younger version of the hero posing as journalist Clark Kent.
Gunn, a director and writer who took over as co-chair and co-CEO at DC Studios in November, said he had 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.”
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