Henry Cavill

Henry William Dalgliesh Cavill (/ˈkævəl/ KAV-əl; born 5 May 1983) is a British actor.

He is known for his portrayal of Charles Brandon in Showtime's The Tudors (2007–2010), Superman in the DC Extended Universe (2013–2023), Geralt of Rivia in the Netflix fantasy series The Witcher (2019–2023), and Sherlock Holmes in the Netflix film Enola Holmes (2020) and its 2022 sequel.

Henry Cavill
Henry Cavill
Cavill in 2019
Born
Henry William Dalgliesh Cavill

(1983-05-05) 5 May 1983 (age 41)
NationalityBritish
OccupationActor
Years active2001–present
Signature
Henry Cavill

Cavill began his career with roles in the film adaptations The Count of Monte Cristo (2002) and I Capture the Castle (2003). He played supporting roles in several television series, including BBC's The Inspector Lynley Mysteries (2002) and ITV's Midsomer Murders (2003), and later appeared in other films, such as Tristan & Isolde (2006), Stardust (2007), and Immortals (2011). Following his international breakthrough as Superman, he starred in the spy films The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015), Mission: Impossible – Fallout (2018), Argylle (2024) and The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare (2024).

Early life

Cavill was born on 5 May 1983, fourth of five boys in a Roman Catholic family in Saint Helier, Jersey, in the Channel Islands. His Jersey-born mother, Marianne Dalgliesh, is of Scottish, English and Irish heritage and worked as a secretary in a bank. His father, Colin Cavill, was born in Chester, England and is a former stockbroker. He was educated at St Michael's Preparatory School in Saint Saviour, Jersey, before attending Stowe School in Stowe, Buckinghamshire.

At Stowe, Cavill was active in both sport and drama. He portrayed a member of the T-Birds in a 1999 school production of Grease and took the lead role in a performance of Dogg's Hamlet, which was made by his own Grafton house as their submission for an intra-school drama festival. He played field hockey for the 1st XI and rugby for the 3rd XV.

In 2000, while playing rugby, 16-year-old Cavill met actor Russell Crowe, who was shooting on location at Stowe for the film Proof of Life. The actor shared some acting tips and later sent a package to Cavill. The two actors later worked together on Man of Steel.

Career

Cavill began his film career with a role in Laguna (2001) and Kevin Reynolds' adaptation of The Count of Monte Cristo (2002). He continued with appearances in BBC's The Inspector Lynley Mysteries (2002), the television film Goodbye, Mr. Chips (2002), and the television series Midsomer Murders (2003). In 2003, he had a supporting role in I Capture the Castle, followed by Hellraiser: Hellworld (2005), Red Riding Hood (2006) and Tristan & Isolde (2006). He had a minor role in Matthew Vaughn's adaptation of Stardust (2007).

Henry Cavill 
Cavill attending the premiere of Whatever Works at the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival

From 2007 to 2010, Cavill had a leading role in Showtime's television series The Tudors, as Charles Brandon, 1st Duke of Suffolk. The series was commercially well-received and it went on to be nominated for a Golden Globe in 2007 and won an Emmy in 2008. Cavill gave the show credit for bolstering his career: "It's done the most for me to date. [...] Now that there's an audience somewhere in America that's aware of who I am, I have more sell-ability, because of The Tudors." Entertainment Weekly named him the "Most Dashing Duke" and praised his work on The Tudors for displaying "charm, depth and a killer bod".

Cavill had been set to play Superman in McG's 2004 film, Superman: Flyby. McG pulled out of the project and direction was taken over by director Bryan Singer, who recast Brandon Routh as the lead in Superman Returns. Cavill was also the cause of a write-in effort from fans to see him cast as Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005). The role eventually went to Robert Pattinson. Stephenie Meyer, the author of the Twilight series, was outspoken in favour of Cavill playing the character of Edward Cullen in the Twilight film, calling him her "perfect Edward". However, by the time production of the film began, Cavill was too old to play the character, and again the role went to Pattinson. Despite reports that he was a contender for Batman in Batman Begins, Cavill confirmed that he never auditioned for, nor was offered, the role.

In 2005, Cavill was a final choice for the role of James Bond in Casino Royale. The producers and director Martin Campbell were torn between him and Daniel Craig; reportedly Campbell supported Cavill but the producers preferred an older Bond, and Craig ultimately landed the role.

While appearing in The Tudors, Cavill starred in director Joel Schumacher's horror film, Blood Creek (2008), and had a supporting role in Woody Allen's comedy film Whatever Works (2009). He went on to play the lead role of Theseus in Tarsem Singh's mythological film, Immortals, released 11 November 2011, and starred, alongside Bruce Willis, in The Cold Light of Day released in 2012.

Henry Cavill 
Cavill and Zack Snyder at the 2013 Man of Steel movie premiere in Sydney

On 30 January 2011, it was announced that Cavill had been cast in the role of Clark Kent / Superman in director Zack Snyder's Man of Steel. Snyder called Cavill "the perfect choice to don the cape and S shield." Entertainment media applauded Henry Cavill on his road to success. On being chosen for the role, Cavill commented, "In the pantheon of superheroes, Superman is the most recognized and revered character of all time, and I am honoured to be a part of his return to the big screen." Cavill reprised the role of Superman in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, a 2016 sequel which featured a crossover with Batman and Wonder Woman. He attended the San Diego Comic-Con in disguise to surprise the cast of Suicide Squad.

Henry Cavill 
Cavill at the 2016 San Diego Comic Con

Cavill returned as Superman in the 2017 theatrical version of Justice League, which had been reworked by director Joss Whedon after Snyder left the project due to a family tragedy. He appeared again in Zack Snyder's Justice League which premiered on HBO Max in March 2021 after an intense fan campaign to see the Snyder cut. His manager Dany Garcia said in 2016 that he was working on a new standalone Superman film. Directors Matthew Vaughn and Christopher McQuarrie were reportedly interested. Shortly after the release of Justice League, Cavill revealed he was under contract to play Superman in one more film.

In 2015, he co-starred with Armie Hammer in the film version of spy series The Man from U.N.C.L.E, directed by Guy Ritchie. In 2018, Cavill co-starred as August Walker in the action spy film Mission: Impossible – Fallout, the sixth installment of the film series. Later that year, he starred in the psychological thriller Night Hunter (originally titled Nomis). Cavill has expressed interest in taking over the role of James Bond after Daniel Craig leaves the role.

From 2019 to 2023, Cavill portrayed the mutant monster hunter Geralt of Rivia in the hit Netflix fantasy drama The Witcher, an adaptation of the book series of the same name by Polish author Andrzej Sapkowski. The series premiered on 20 December 2019 and had its early premiere on Służewiec Racetrack in Warsaw on 18 December 2019. In late October 2022, Cavill and Netflix announced that he would exit from The Witcher after the third season released in 2023, and would be replaced by Liam Hemsworth.

In 2020, Cavill portrayed Sherlock Holmes in Legendary Entertainment's film adaptation of The Enola Holmes Mysteries, with Millie Bobby Brown starring in the eponymous role as the younger sister of the famous detective. In 2022, Cavill reprised his role as Sherlock in Enola Holmes 2. On 7 November 2023, Collider reported that Netflix was developing a screenplay for Enola Holmes 3.

In May 2021, it was announced that Cavill would portray the lead role in the reboot of Highlander, although his exact character is unknown. In July 2021, it was also announced that Cavill would join an all-star cast for director Matthew Vaughn's new spy film Argylle. The same month, an article by Deadline reported that he would star in The Rosie Project, directed by Steve Falk and based on the book of the same name, written by Australian author Graeme Simsion.

Cavill negotiated what was intended to be a one-time contract with Warner Bros. to return as Superman in Black Adam, and appeared in a cameo in the mid-credit scene of the film. Later a sequel to Man of Steel was put back in development, with Cavill set to return. He confirmed in October 2022 that he would appear in future DCEU films and referred to his mid-credits cameo as "just a very small taste of things to come". However, in December 2022 Cavill released a statement saying that his future involvement as Superman was no longer moving forward after meeting with new DC Studios executives James Gunn and Peter Safran; Variety reported that Cavill was eyed to play a different DC character.

In April 2024, Cavill re-teamed with director Guy Ritchie on the World War II spy action film The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare, with Jerry Bruckheimer producing. The film is based on a true story by British author Damien Lewis. Cavill will reunite with Ritchie in the director’s action thriller film In The Grey which is set to release in January 2025.

After the acquisition of global rights to the Warhammer 40,000 franchise by Amazon Studios in December 2022, Cavill was attached to star in and executive produce projects related to it.

Public images

Cavill was listed as one of GQ's 50 best-dressed British men in 2012. In December 2013, he was named "World's Sexiest Man" by British Glamour magazine. The same year, Empire magazine placed him third on their list of "The 100 Sexiest Movie Stars 2013".

In early 2008, Cavill became the face of the British fragrance Dunhill. He appeared in two television commercials for the brand.

Personal life

Cavill was born on Jersey, an island in the Channel Islands. Cavill resides in South Kensington, London. He was engaged to English show jumper Ellen Whitaker from 2011 until 2012. In May 2021, he announced his relationship with Natalie Viscuso. On 15 April 2024, it was announced that they are expecting their first child.

In 2016, Cavill started practicing Brazilian jiu-jitsu, having been seen training at Roger Gracie's academy in London. Cavill supports the Jersey Rugby Club. While living in the United States, Cavill began to watch American football and became a supporter of the National Football League's (NFL) Kansas City Chiefs.

He has been an avid gamer since childhood, at one point missing a phone call from Zack Snyder telling him he got the role of Superman because he was too busy playing World of Warcraft. He prefers PC gaming over consoles, having been introduced to it by his father when he was a young boy, and has been building and maintaining his own gaming computer. He credited his experience playing The Witcher video game series prior to the show's production with motivating him to seek out the role of Geralt. He has also named the Total War series of strategy games to be among his favourites, and in May 2020 it was announced that a new character paying tribute to Cavill and his Witcher character Geralt would be added to Total War: Warhammer II via DLC: Cavill, Loremaster of Hoeth. Cavill also enjoys the Warhammer 40,000 series of games and fiction, saying he "genuinely can't get enough of the lore they have built over the decades."

Cavill is a spokesman for the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, and an ambassador for The Royal Marines Charity. He launched the running phase of the Royal Marines 1664 Challenge and took part in The Gibraltar Rock Run 2014.

Filmography

Key
Denotes films that have not yet been released

Film

Year Title Role Notes Ref.
2001 Laguna Thomas Aprea
2002 The Count of Monte Cristo Albert Mondego
2003 I Capture the Castle Stephen Colley
2005 Hellraiser: Hellworld Mike
2006 Tristan & Isolde Melot
Red Riding Hood The Hunter
2007 Stardust Humphrey
2009 Whatever Works Randy Lee James
Blood Creek Evan Marshall
2011 Immortals Theseus
2012 The Cold Light of Day Will Shaw
2013 Man of Steel Kal-El / Clark Kent / Superman
2015 The Man from U.N.C.L.E. Napoleon Solo
2016 Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Kal-El / Clark Kent / Superman
2017 Sand Castle Capt. Syverson
Justice League Kal-El / Clark Kent / Superman
2018 Mission: Impossible – Fallout August Walker
Night Hunter Marshall
2020 Enola Holmes Sherlock Holmes
2021 Zack Snyder's Justice League Kal-El / Clark Kent / Superman
2022 Black Adam Uncredited cameo; post-credits scene
Enola Holmes 2 Sherlock Holmes
2023 The Flash Kal-El / Clark Kent / Superman Uncredited cameo
2024 Argylle Agent Aubrey Argylle
The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare Gus March-Phillipps
2025 In the Grey TBA Post-production

Television

Year Title Role Notes Ref.
2002 The Inspector Lynley Mysteries Chas Quilter Episode: "Well Schooled in Murder"
Goodbye, Mr. Chips Soldier Colley Television film
2003 Midsomer Murders Simon Mayfield Episode: "The Green Man"
2007–2010 The Tudors Charles Brandon Main role
2019–2023 The Witcher Geralt of Rivia

Video games

Year Title Voice role Ref.
TBA Squadron 42 Ryan Enright

Awards and nominations

Award Year Category Nominated work Result Ref.
Critics' Choice Movie Awards 2014 Best Actor in an Action Movie Man of Steel Nominated
Critics' Choice Super Awards 2022 Best Actor in a Science Fiction/Fantasy Series The Witcher
Golden Raspberry Awards 2017 Worst Actor Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
Worst Screen Combo (shared with Ben Affleck) Won
HCA TV Awards 2022 Best Actor in a Streaming Series, Drama The Witcher Nominated
Kids' Choice Awards 2017 Favorite Movie Actor Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
Favorite Butt Kicker
Favorite Frenemies (shared with Ben Affleck)
MTV Movie Awards 2014 Best Hero Man of Steel Won
NewNowNext Awards 2012 Cause You're Hot The Tudors Nominated
2013 Man of Steel
Saturn Awards 2021 Best Actor on Television The Witcher
Teen Choice Awards 2013 Choice Summer Movie Star: Male Man of Steel
Choice Liplock (shared with Amy Adams)
2016 Choice Movie Actor: Sci-Fi/Fantasy Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
Choice Liplock (shared with Amy Adams)
2018 Choice Action Movie Actor Justice League

Notes

References

Tags:

Henry Cavill Early lifeHenry Cavill CareerHenry Cavill Public imagesHenry Cavill Personal lifeHenry Cavill FilmographyHenry Cavill Awards and nominationsHenry Cavill

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