Henry Cavill has been called many things – handsome, charming, talented – but perhaps the most surprising label attached to the British actor is “the most unlucky man in Hollywood.”
That moniker stems from a memorable period earlier in Cavill’s career littered with agonizing near-misses in major franchises.
Cavill’s streak of bad luck began in the early 2000s. At only 21 years old, he lost out to Robert Pattinson for the highly coveted role of Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
Though disappointed, Cavill quickly rebounded, only to suffer another major setback. In 2005, he auditioned to play James Bond in Casino Royale, even screen testing for director Martin Campbell. But the director remarked that Cavill looked “a little chubby” compared to envisioned 007 Daniel Craig.
Despite the criticism, Cavill remained undeterred. “It helps me get better,” he said, taking the comments as motivation.
That drive almost paid off in 2004 when director McG tapped him as his top choice for Superman in a planned reboot. Cavill was so close to playing the Man of Steel, but McG’s fear of flying doomed the project, refusing to film in Australia.
By 2011, Cavill was back in contention for Superman, but reportedly lost out again, this time to Brandon Routh because he looked too young on camera.
The biggest blow came when Cavill was strongly considered for the career-launching role of Edward Cullen in Twilight. Author Stephanie Meyer even raved, “The only actor I’ve ever seen who I think could come close to pulling off Edward Cullen is Henry Cavill.”
But the producers felt the 24-year old was too old to believably play a 17-year-old vampire.
After this spate of agonizing close calls, Empire magazine dubbed Cavill “the most unlucky man in Hollywood.”
But he kept his composure, persisting through the unlucky streak. As Cavill later told Men’s Health, “I’m glad Martin [Campbell] said something [about looking too chubby for Bond], because I respond well to truth.”
While these missed opportunities might have broken the spirit of many, Cavill’s resilience shone through. His big break finally came when he was cast as the iconic Superman in Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel.”
The film was a box office success, and Cavill’s portrayal of the Kryptonian superhero was widely praised. This role not only established him as a leading man in Hollywood but also erased the “unlucky” tag that had plagued him for years.
Following “Man of Steel,” Cavill’s career trajectory soared. He reprised his role as Superman in subsequent DC films, took on the lead in the Netflix series “The Witcher,” and showcased his range in various other projects.
Henry Cavill’s journey in Hollywood serves as a testament to the unpredictability of the entertainment industry. It’s a world where timing, luck, and opportunity often play as significant a role as talent.
But Cavill’s story also underscores the importance of resilience and belief in oneself. He proved that perseverance pays off, turning those early unlucky breaks into the foundation for an A-list career.