This article is the first in a new series we’ll be running on The Daily Quirk called What’s the big deal about…where we highlight a topic that is on the tip of everyone’s tongues and clue you in on why it’s such a big deal right now. For our first feature, we have chosen Henry Cavill, an actor who is getting as much press for a movie he has not been cast in yet for one he is starring in next year. But why? There are the obvious reasons like his dashing looks, acting skills, and for many of us american girls that accent, but there are lots of handsome talented men out there, so what is about Henry Cavill that sets him apart from the rest? I will do my best to break it down for you in this addition of What’s the big deal about…
So exactly who is Henry Cavill? He was born in Jersey, no not New Jersey, but a British Crown Dependency in the Channel Islands just off the coast of France on May 5, 1983. He grew up the fourth of five boys in a fairly average family, his mother was a secretary and his father a stockbroker, and lived there till he went to Stowe School, a boarding school in Buckinghamshire, England, at age thirteen. It was there that the drama bug seriously bit him (although the school is not specifically for acting) and he began taking part in the school’s productions of Shakespeare.
At 17, he was “discovered” at Stowe when casting directors for The Count of Monte Cristo visited the school looking for a boy to play the role of Albert Mondego in the film. From there, Cavill took on minor roles in many film and television projects before landing the role he is probably most famous for to date, Charles Brandon in the Showtime Series The Tudors.
Besides being famous for The Tudors, Cavill has also received some notoriety for being “The Unluckiest Man in Hollywood” after Empire Magazine crowned him with the moniker in it’s December 2005 as a result of all the roles he was considered for, but did not receive. In fact, Cavill was considered for and/or came close to getting roles that other actors have become famous for playing. Stephanie Meyer originally suggested Cavill for the role of Edward Cullen, but by the time the movie was in production, it was decided he was too old to play the part and Robert Pattinson was eventually cast. And it was not the first time he missed out on a role Pattinson would play. There was a write in campaign by fans asking that Cavill be cast a Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire another role Pattison received. If things had gone differently for another role, all the Skyfall adverts you see now would have Cavill’s face on them instead of Daniel Craig. When the role of James Bond in the recent movies was up for grabs, it came down to Cavill and Craig for the part with Craig eventually winning out. Many suggest it was age again that was Cavill’s downfall, with him being significantly younger than any of the previous Bonds. And as far as the role of Superman goes, the second time is a charm for Cavill, who will be staring in Superman: Man of Steel in 2013. He was all set to hit the big screen as the man of steel in 2004 until director Joseph McGinty Nichol pulled out of the film. The film’s replacement director, Bryan Singer, decided to recast the role making Brandon Routh Superman (wonder if Singer is kicking himself for that one).
Cavill might just be lucky he missed out on some of those roles, as his career continues to pick up steam without the tarnish of flops or association with any previous franchises. He recently starred in Woody Allen’s Whatever Works, The Immortals, and The Cold Light of Day all to rave reviews of his performances. And he has some big films in the works too.
The aforementioned Superman: Man of Steele role is sure to skyrocket Cavill to Hollywood A-List status. The film co-written by Christopher Nolan, of the extremely successful rebooted Batman franchise, is already being touted as the biggest film of 2013. There has also been speculation that the film will lead to sequels and a possible DC Comics “Justice League” film similar to the Marvel Comics character movie, The Avengers.
Cavill will follow up Superman: Man of Steele by starring in The Great Wall, an eppic film about British warriors who happen along the construction of The Great Wall and find out that the Chinese are motivated to build by more than just the invading Mongols. These high profile leading man roles are sure to put Cavill in even more demand and if fans had their way, his next role would be all picked out.
One of the main reasons Henry Cavill is a “big deal” right now, aside from Superman, is his enormous fan support for the role of Christian Grey in the upcoming movie adaptation of EL James Fifty Shades of Grey. In researching this article, I found that although for the most part his fans are not out there voting in polls (most major Henry Cavill fan pages seem to object to the multiple voting policy of major polls such as the recent poll conducted by Katie Couric and our own previous Christian Grey Poll and therefore abstain) they are strong in number and just as serious about their man getting the role as any of the other fan groups. Even if you have another dream choice for the role, it is hard to argue with Cavill fans who say he is perfect for the role if you have ever seen a picture of him (I don’t think anyone can argue that he’s not attractive), seen him perform (he honestly is an excellent actor), or any of the now infamous Dunhill Adverts where he a drives a sports car like he means business, pilots a helicopter and gives the camera the kind of smoldering looks one would expect from Christian Grey.
Now that you know the Henry Cavill basics, I thought I would tell you a little bit more about him from the point of view of a fan. Melissa Davideit runs two nifty facebook fan pages Christian Grey Fan Pages (one guess who she would like cast in the role), and is a big time Cavill fan. She was kind enough to answer a few questions about Henry and what makes him so special and even got the followers on her page to give their input too!
The Daily Quirk: When did you first become aware of Henry Cavill?
Melissa Davideit: When he starred in The Count of Monte Cristo.
TDQ: What made you a fan?
MD: Watching Henry in The Tudors, Blood Creek, The Cold Light of Day and Immortals; the depth of his acting skills, the passion, and sincerity he gives the characters of the roles he portrays seem effortless. Seeing Henry evolve throughout the years as an actor has been impressive. He is confident, displays extreme versatility, and certainly knows how to manipulate his body language in a way that appeals to the female audience.
TDQ: What made you start your fanpage?
MD: I first started Christian Grey Fans to show my love for Christian Grey and Henry Cavill, but I started getting a lot of negative feedback towards Henry Cavill from some of the other fans, and this became a problem for me. Recently I created Christian Grey Fans: Henry Cavill. I wanted to familiarize people with his acting abilities, and his personality traits. I felt it was unfair that some of the fans kept dismissing him as Christian Grey because they didn’t know much about him. And I am happy to report that the fans that have taken the time to get to know him have changed their thoughts, and now believe he should be Christian Grey.
TDQ: Henry Cavill fans seem to be very protective of him and his image? Why do you think that is?
MD: Henry seems sincere during his off-camera moments, and is very attentive with his fans. He has his quirky moments and he looks like he could be someone that everyone can relate to. What’s not to like? He’s charming, humble, genuine, and witty. He displays a sense of serenity, poise, and has an outgoing personality with his fans, he even takes the time to ask them how to spell their names when signing autographs, and makes sure everyone got a chance to take a picture with him. His overall demeanor makes him a sweetheart, it’s impossible not to love him, and obviously us fans take it personally when someone tries to smudge his appearance with their negativity when they have no reason to.
TDQ: What has been your favorite role Henry has taken on so far?
MD: Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffoulk from The Tudors. It was here that Henry was given the chance to display the flexibility of his acting abilities.
TDQ: Henry’s been dubbed “the unluckiest man in Hollywood” because of all the roles he was considered for, but did not get. Which of these roles do you think he was lucky to miss?
MD: Twilight’s Edward Cullen for sure. Him not getting cast should not be considered as bad luck, but as a strike of luck. It has lead to more promising roles, such as Theseus in Immortals, and his role as Superman in the upcoming movie Man of Steel. And hopefully with more luck, C.G. in Fifty Shades of Grey.
TDQ: Which do you wish he received?
MD: James Bond would have been perfect! Definitely a versatile role and to see a younger James Bond would have been great. However, it may have been too much of a change for the die-hard fans though. Watching all the James Bond movies, I believe Henry was too young to be considered for the most recent role of Bond. So, it may still be possible that Henry could still have a shot at playing 007.
TDQ: What other role would you love to see him play?
MD: Henry could play any role, but would be best suited for, Action, Drama, Romance or Suspense. James Bond or Thomas Crown from The Thomas Crown Affair.
TDQ: It can be argued the adverts Henry Cavill did for Dunhill are a picture perfect representation of how EL James describes Christian Grey. What is it about Henry Cavill that screams Christian Grey to you?
MD: The Dunhill commercials, among other things, convinced me that Henry Cavill is no doubt the muse. While reading Fifty Shades of Grey, the characteristics of Christian Grey are closely related to those of Henry. His eyes come close to the gray eyes described in the book, he has a strong jaw, the well sculpted nose, and his hair has a copper sheen when light reflects on it. He has the crooked smile, a smile that could light up Seattle, and he has the body of a Greek god. He can definitely be charming, seductive, and charismatic, his chiseled facial features and his overall appearance is disarming. “I concider Henry Cavill human perfection.” Henry has been caught on multiple occasions wearing a white linen shirt and jeans, as well as the famous gray tie. It’s baffling to know that people are refusing to accept these facts, all the signs point to Henry.
TDQ: There has been a lot of buzz about Henry’s next big film “Man of Steel” in which he plays the most iconic superhero of all time, Superman. What do you think he’ll bring to the role that is different than others before him?
MD: The confidence, dedication, hard work, and personality he has put into all the characters he has portrayed throughout his career makes me believe that he will be the best Superman to hit the big screen. And to those who do not know him now, they will certainly know him then. I am anxiously waiting to see the transformation Henry has made for the role of Superman. There have been rumors that he added 20 lbs. of muscle for this role, and by the looks of some of the released photos of him on the set, I believe the rumors to be true. I feel confident that the role of Superman will prove Henry Cavill worthy to anyone that has ever doubted his abilities as an actor. I’m sure this is just the beginning of the journey he has worked so hard for, and I’m convinced he will go far.
TDQ: If you could ask Henry Cavill any one question, what would it be?
MD: This question is hard for me to answer since I have so many questions I would ask him, but one of the questions I would ask him is, “Henry could you speak to me for a bit in your British accent?” I am planning a trip to California for Comic-Con next year, and I really hope to at least see him. So Henry, if by chance word of this article gets to you, I am such a dedicated fan and would love to meet you.
Melissa makes a strong case for why fans are clamoring for as much Cavill as they can get, but what do others have to say? Melissa opened up the question to followers of her popular facebook fan pages, asking what they personally love about Henry Cavill and here are a few of my personal favorite quotes:
He embodies every romantic hero that’s ever been written. And on the edge of becoming a household name, he’s still very humble. – Heather Terrel
With me being blind I can’t comment on his looks. For me it is his understanding and knowledge of every role he partakes in. How he oozes ease and stamina no matter how challenging a role is or can be. He gives 110% in everything he does from working to meeting fans. He doesn’t seem to see a bad side to anything. He excels in everything he Sets his mind to from the role itself to the vigorous training before hand. He really does give me the pleasure of being a fan of a star who really does seem to do the acting career for others and not just himself. May he have many more exciting successful and pleasurable roles in his future. – Pamela Linney
His acting work is amazing. And the fact that he is so down to earth and he said himself that he doesnt consider himself famous. He still thinks himself as one of the little people. Hes just an amazing person inside and out. – Melanie Mullins
Besides his beautiful appearance, he comes across in interviews genuine. Seems to have had a good, supportive upbringing. This translates in his demeanor and personality. Looking forward to seeing more of him. – Michelle Jackson-Wintsch
I love that he’s so humble when it comes to his fans. He’s sincere and charming. He’s beautiful and an amazing actor that gives so much emotion and heart into his characters. Can’t wait to see him in Man of Steel and many more roles that come his way!!! – Killian Messina
He comes across a very down to earth, genuinely nice person in interviews & videos with fans. He seems to put everything he has into the characters he portrays, it seems so effortless and natural for him. His good looks are a definite plus to say the least. I personally love his eyes, hair and smile and that very nice body of his only enhances his good looks. He is the total package! – Angela Sanders Sweatman
If you are curious why the fans I quoted above think Henry Cavill is so good to his fans check out this video, one of many that can be found on youtube, of Henry taking pictures and signing autographs for fans.
They sure are right when they say he comes across as a humble genuine guy, and I am shocked that no one has used that soundbite of him saying “I’m not going anywhere” yet in one of their Fifty Shades fan trailers (at least none I have seen). It makes me swoon every time I hear it and I am pretty much Henry-ed out after writing this article. But that is exactly what the big deal about Henry Cavill is for his fans – every time you think you have seen all he has to offer you are surprised yet again by his charm, good looks, and talent. I think everyone will continue to be surprised with Henry Cavill as the Superman franchise roles out next year and he undoubtedly snags more leading man roles in the future.