It turns out, despite how disappointed it was, Henry Cavill not returning as Superman was a blessing in disguise as it freed him up to bring his passion project to life with Warhammer 40k coming to Amazon where he’ll star and executive produce.
The actor took to Instagram today (Friday 16 December) to announce the news.
“For 30 years I have dreamt of seeing a Warhammer universe in live action. Now, after 22 years of experience in this industry, I finally feel that I have the skills set and experience to guide a Warhammer Cinematic Universe into life,” he revealed.
The former Witcher star continued by announcing he’ll be working alongside Vertigo’s Natalie Viscuso and described Amazon as “the perfect home.”
Adding, “Having a home like Amazon will give us the freedom to be true to the massive scope of Warhammer.”
To round off his statement, the British actor spoke directly to fans saying, “To all of you Warhammer fans out there, I promise to respect this IP that we love. I promise to bring you something familiar. And I endeavour to bring you something fantastic that is, as of yet, unseen.”
Meanwhile, Viscuso herself took to social media to express her excitement.
“Fantasy, horror and sci-fi are the bedrock of my creative language, so when Henry introduced me to Warhammer a couple of years ago, I immediately felt at home.
“The stories are rich and complex, the scope of the world building provides an incredible playground for one’s imagination, and the characters, both tragic and heroic, never leave you,” she said.
The studio exec continued: “Building a cinematic universe with Henry, our team at Amazon, and the empire that is Games Workshop, is an honor and a pleasure.
“To the community: thank you for the warm welcome. We hope to do you proud. And importantly…Glory to Slaanesh.”
As Cavill mentioned in his statement, which included a logo graphic, the next move is to find a filmmaker and writer to bring this project to life.
It should be known that Henry and Natalie are in a relationship and, in some ways following in the footsteps of Zack and Debbie Snyder. I hope they’ve spoken/will speak to the couple as they have the greatest first-hand experience of handling major cinematic universes (DC, Army of the Dead, Rebel Moon) and being happily married.
It can’t be understated how important it is for Cavill and Viscuso to find the right writer and director because even though it’s an incredibly popular game among its fans, to the general public, it’s very niche.
I’m one of these people who knows the square root of jack shit about Warhammer, but luckily Georgie Broad does know. So I’ll let her briefly describe the story, why we should be excited and if Amazon is an ideal home.
“So it’s exciting because the Warhammer universe is VAST – people have speculations already around which story or characters the series might focus on but really the scope for what they could do is huge which is really exciting!” explained Georgie.
She continued to give a background into the franchise’s lore: “From what we know, the whole project will probably start with Warhammer 40k and then potentially explore other areas of lore that GW has created around the Warhammer IP more generally.
“40k is so named because all of the story is taking place in the 41st millennium l. It’s grim, it’s dark (they always use the term grimdark!) and the world is being ruled over by The Emperor of Mankind,” she added.
“Armies fight for him and armies fight to topple him (there is an incredible amount of lore that precedes 40k called the Horus Heresy, or Warhammer 30k, that goes into details about how and why people fight for and against the the emperor).”
Georgie continued to explain that the humans involved aren’t really people and more super soldiers known as Space Marines – genetically engineered and modified huge soldiers – “but also there are daemons, corrupted with Chaos…and of course aliens!”
I asked my Warhammer expert what story she thought could be adapted to live-action, and this is what she said.
“As for the story, I think Eisenhorn is what many people believe will be the focus. It’s a trilogy by Dan Abbett (because all the lore is contained in books from Black Library, the publishers of GW novels and they are some absolutely incredible stories that I encourage everyone to read!
“It’s about two Inquisitors called Gregor Eisenhorn and Gideon Ravenor on the hunt for heretics and demons, trying themselves not to get turned to Chaos,” she added.
Finally, I asked Georgie what her thoughts were on Amazon having control of this property, and her answer is incredibly encouraging for both viewers and fans alike.
“Amazon could be a good place for this – Rings of Power was divisive in its reception, but Amazon proved it has the budget and the chops to take on a big IP and do it well.
“If Cavill’s deep involvement in the production of the Witcher is anything to go by, they could really do the story justice and create some characters that will really help shape the future of GW breaking out into another world.”
Finally, I’m just so fucking happy for Cavill that he’s got something that’ll put all his heart and soul into and create something that he will be proud of and have fans excited. I may not know a lot, but his love and Broad’s explanation do get me hyped.
Jeff Sneider originally broke the story on his The Hot Mic Podcast and please follow the fantastic Georgie Broad on Twitter for more Warhammer talk and all-around film chat.