British actor Henry Cavill whose credits include the Showtime series The Tudors, the 2007 fantasy film Stardust and the coming adventure Immortals, will play the Man of Steel for Warner Brothers in Zack Snyder's version. After much speculation the relative unknown has landed one of the most coveted roles in Hollywood. The 28-year-old actor has a little history with comic adaptions after auditioning for Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins but ended up of curse losing out to fellow Brit Christian Bale. This is actually not the first time Cavill has been cast as Superman.

Here is the Official press release:

Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures announced today that Henry Cavill has won the coveted role of Superman, the iconic superhero. The film will be directed by Zack Snyder, who stated, “In the pantheon of superheroes, Superman is the most recognized and revered character of all time, and I am honored to be a part of his return to the big screen. I also join Warner Bros., Legendary and the producers in saying how excited we are about the casting of Henry. He is the perfect choice to don the cape and S shield.Charles Roven, Emma Thomas, Christopher Nolan and Deborah Snyder are the producers of the film. The screenplay is being written by David S. Goyer based on a story by Goyer and Nolan. Thomas Tull and Lloyd Phillips are serving as executive producers. Cavill recently wrapped production on “The Cold Light of Day” and stars in the upcoming “Immortals,” opening this fall. Targeted for release in December 2012, the new Superman movie will be distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.

Funnily enough Cavill was selected to play Superman already when JJ Abrams was penning "Superman: Flyby" the screenplay which included Superman dying but returning from the dead, and the reveal that Lex Luthor is actually a second son of Krypton, and also has superpowers. McG was directing that version. That production was shelved in favour of Bryan Singer, and his Superman Returns, but Warner did go as far as telling Cavill he had the role, and officially attached him. Thanks to BleedingCool for the info.

In an interview with MTV the actor stated:

"I was attached to the McG ‘Superman’ movie. Then Bryan Singer came on and took the helm and he made his movie. [The McG and Singer versions] were two different movies. So it wasn’t so much of a sting because it was like, ‘Oh, I got [the role],’ and then the movie just didn’t happen."

Image via Ralph Damiani sketchbook.

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