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Henry Cavill dropped as Superman just two months after announcing his return

'This news isn’t the easiest, but that’s life,' said Cavill in a statement.

By Nick Reilly

Henry Cavill as Superman

Superman actor Henry Cavill has announced he will not be returning to the role after all, a mere two months after confirming his anticipated comeback.

It has instead been confirmed that Guardians Of The Galaxy director and DC Studios’ new co-chair James Gunn is writing a Superman movie that won’t involve Cavill – who described the development as “not the easiest news”.

As The Guardian reports, Gunn’s new film will instead focus on the superhero’s younger years.

Cavill has memorably played the DC Comics hero since 2013’s Man of Steel and most recently appeared in the role in a cameo alongside Dwayne Johnson in Black Adam earlier this year.

The actor confirmed his return to the role in October, having stepped down from the lead role in Netflix’s fantasy series The Witcher.

“I will, after all, not be returning as Superman,” Cavill wrote in a statement. “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. The changing of the guard is something that happens. I respect that. James and Peter [Safran, DC co-chair] have a universe to build. I wish them and all involved with the new universe the best of luck, and the happiest of fortunes.”

“My turn to wear the cape has passed, but what Superman stands for never will. It’s been a fun ride with you all, onwards and upwards.”

Gunn said: “Peter & I have a DC slate ready to go, which we couldn’t be more over-the-moon about; we’ll be able to share some exciting information about our first projects at the beginning of the new year. “Among those on the slate is Superman. In the initial stages, our story will be focusing 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 big fans and we talked about a number of exciting possibilities to work together in the future.”

The latest upheaval to strike DC comes after parent company Warner Brothers slashed a number of projects to cut costs after a merger with Discovery, Inc, including Batgirl.

On Tuesday it was also revealed that DC Studios’ Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins would no longer be working on a third franchise film. She wrote in a lengthy open letter: “I never walked away. I was open to considering anything asked of me. It was my understanding there was nothing I could do to move anything forward at this time.”