Henry Cavill on Warhammer 40K, Mass Effect, and returning to Superman

The Witcher star Henry Cavill expressed his dream project is to headline a Warhammer 40K film or TV series.


Henry Cavill is back for the second season of The Witcher, but there is another gaming property the star would like to headline some day: Warhammer 40,000.

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The Witcher's Henry Cavill shared his passion for Warhammer 40K, Mass Effect, and returning as Superman. (Images: Netflix and Games Workshop)

The unofficial King of the Geeks, Henry Cavill has made his nerdy interests no secret. A devoted and hardcore gamer himself, the actor who has portrayed both Superman for the DCEU and Geralt of Rivia in the Netflix Original Series, proudly waves his geek cred.

But why, of all properties out there, would Warhammer 40,000 be on the top of his dream project list? Read on for the actor’s thoughts on the subject below.

Henry Cavill and Warhammer 40K

In an interview with Empire Magazine, Henry Cavill shared his thoughts about a big-budget Warhammer 40K adaptation:

I think because Games Workshop have been very protective of their IP, and that's a great decision, and very wise. There haven't been just loads of TV shows and movies all done poorly. It needs to be handled perfectly. It needs to be handled to a Lord Of The Rings level. And if it's not, I'll be massively disappointed.

When pressed about which character he would like to play and asked if he would be open to playing Eisenhorn (the protagonist of a trilogy of Warhammer 40K novels written by Dan Abnett):

I mean, I don't know about Eisenhorn necessarily, when you've got Valdor and Primarchs out there. It seems a shame to be a mere Inquisitor. But I would absolutely leap at that opportunity — it's something I'd be very, very excited to do.

Warhammer 40,000 (often shortened to Warhammer 40K) is a sprawling science fiction and fantasy epic. Created, developed, and published by Games Workshop, it is actually the offshoot of the company’s earlier Warhammer Fantasy. Originally a setting for the miniatures game, Warhammer 40K has expanded to novels, tabletop roleplaying, and video games.

The popularity of the Warhammer 40K franchise has particularly boomed during the COVID-19 pandemic. To illustrate, while other gaming companies floundered in 2020 to 2021, Games Workshop posted an increase in profits from $125 million in 2020 to $210 million in 2021. It is even more popular than Dungeons & Dragons in the United Kingdom.

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Warhammer 40,000 is a miniatures game with a vast lore behind the millenia-spanning science fantasy epic.

And Henry Cavill is an admitted hardcore hobbyist who devours Warhammer 40K stuff. The British actor has even shared his painting of the miniatures on social media. One particular Instagram post revealed his preferred army, the Adeptus Custodes. These are the personal guard of the God Emperor of Mankind, a special elite chapter of the famed Imperial Space Marines.

In another Instagram post, Cavill shared a behind-the-scenes photo on the set of The Witcher. Sporting the new look of his portrayal of Geralt of Rivia, Cavill’s caption for the post included an intriguing reference to Neoth:

If you are asking who Neoth is, you are not alone in being unaware. It is actually a very obscure detail from Warhammer 40K lore. It is a name the Emperor of Mankind gave himself during the far ancient times, long before the main setting of Warhammer 40K’s timeline. Only a dedicated fan and hobbyist deep into the Warhammer 40K details would even be familiar with it.

And to hammer home the point, Cavill even shared his passion for Warhammer 40K in a recent episode of The Graham Norton Show. The Witcher star even managed to pique the interest of Tom Holland and Zendaya, who were on a promotional tour of Spider-Man: No Way Home.

All these just proves Cavill takes the lore of the source material very seriously, and he would no doubt treat it with the same respect as he has with his previous geek culture roles.

Mass Effect musings

But Warhammer 40K is not the only other gaming IP that Henry Cavill is interested in fronting. In an interview with Gamesradar+, the actor stated he would be interested about taking a role in the Mass Effect universe.

When posed with the question of the possibility, Cavill had this to say:

Very much so, yeah, all depending on how they’re executing it. The world of adaptation can be heavy or light. When I like a product, I prefer the adaptation to be less changed from the source, so it all depends. I think it’s found a home, hasn’t it? If it finds a home, I would love to have a conversation… It would make such a magnificent series of movies or TV shows.

Earlier in February, Cavill teased about a secret project on an Instagram post that, according to sources, is an early script of a Mass Effect live action series. Amazon is apparently making the series come to life in the near future.

Still ready to wear the cape

And for the DCEU fans, do not fret. Cavill goes on record that he is ready to don the red and blue suit once again... if Warner Bros. gets its act together. In a guesting on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, he states he is only waiting for a phone call to make it happen.

The genre actor even goes so far as being open to the idea of bringing back the red trunks in the iconic Superman costume. In the interview, Cavill displays his understanding as to why the original suit sported the red trunks, explaining its connection to circus strongmen and wrestlers. Although Cavill’s future as Superman is still up in the air, Black Adam producer and star Dwayne Johnson wants to make it happen.

With all the geek culture roles Henry Cavill is interested in playing, studios should be taking notes. With the success of Netflix’s second season of The Witcher virtually assured, the popular star could certainly do it again.

The Witcher Season 2 is now available on the Netflix streaming service.

Geoff Borgonia
Geoffrey "Borgy" Borgonia is a veteran writer, artist, journalist, gamer, and entrepreneur based in the Philippines. When not contributing to some of the top pop culture sites on the planet, he spends the rest of his time running his business, practicing martial arts, working on and developing books, comics, and games. In his man-cave, his only luxury is sleep. Borgy on Linkedin.
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