Superman movie reboot confirmed with J.J. Abrams and Ta-Nehisi Coates — but what about Henry Cavill?

Superman movie reboot confirmed with J.J. Abrams and Ta-Nehisi Coates — but what about Henry Cavill?
(Image credit: Rodin Eckenroth, Getty Images)

It's a bird, it's a plane, it's a Superman reboot. Warner Bros. and DC are prepping a new take on the superhero from writer Ta-Nehisi Coates and producer J.J. Abrams through his Bad Robot banner. And it may introduce the first Black Superman. 

News of the Superman reboot was first reported by Shadow and Act, then confirmed by Deadline. The project is still in the early stages of development, with no start or release date planned. 

There is no director attached and Shadow and Act notes that "the search for an actor to play Kal-El / Superman hasn’t started yet," indicating Henry Cavill won't be back as the Man of Steel.

Cavill donned Superman's cape in Man of Steel (2013), Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016) and Justice League (2017). He'll also appear next month's Justice League Snyder Cut

But the future of the DC Extended Universe has been up in the air since Justice League debuted to big box office but scathing review. Warner Bros. is currently making The Batman, a reboot starring Robert Pattinson. So, it's not surprising a new Superman would follow. 

Cavill doesn't even need to get the boot; the new project could be set in a different universe. The upcoming Flash movie is reportedly tapping into the multiverse to feature different incarnations of Batman, including Michael Keaton and Ben Affleck.

Sources told The Hollywood Reporter that the reboot is "being set up as a Black Superman story." The report also notes that Michael B. Jordan attempted to develop a Black Superman project at Warner Bros. and that the studio might turn to him again as the star.

Coates is the acclaimed author of bestsellers including Between the World and Me, The Beautiful Struggle, We Were Eight Years in Power and The Water Dancer. He's made recent forays into the comics world, writing for Marvel series Captain America and Black Panther. Disney boss Bob Iger tipped his hat at Coates' writing as a factor in green-lighting the Black Panther movie starring Chadwick Boseman.

“To be invited into the DC Extended Universe by Warner Bros., DC Films and Bad Robot is an honor,” Coates told Shadow and Act. “I look forward to meaningfully adding to the legacy of America's most iconic mythic hero."

Abrams added, "There is a new, powerful and moving Superman story yet to be told."

Kelly Woo
Streaming Editor

Kelly is the streaming channel editor for Tom’s Guide, so basically, she watches TV for a living. Previously, she was a freelance entertainment writer for Yahoo, Vulture, TV Guide and other outlets. When she’s not watching TV and movies for work, she’s watching them for fun, seeing live music, writing songs, knitting and gardening.