Man of Steel director Zack Snyder (300) thinks so.
"What you see is what you get with Henry," the filmmaker says. "He is a kind guy. The funny thing about him is I think because he comes from a military family and his brothers are in the military, this idea of service - the kind of service Superman must take on - is not foreign to him, so it's not like a thing he has to put on, like, 'In this scene, I care?'
"He's also not a complainer. I had him filming in winter on a heliport in Vancouver with no shirt on and we had to spray him with water for take after take against a freezing wind and he never said a thing. It wasn't until his trainer said, 'Henry will literally fall down before he will say anything, but you've got to give him a break,' that I realised he wasn't a machine."
In the newest movie adaptation of the iconic character created by writer Jerry Siegel and artist Joe Shuster in the 1938 Action Comics series, adoptive parents Martha (Diane Lane) and Jonathan (Kevin Costner) have taught Clark Kent (Cavill) to hide his true identity, fearful that mankind isn't ready to embrace an alien on Earth. Though absent for all Clark's young life, it falls to his biological father Jor-El (Russell Crowe), who comes to him through virtual computer technology, to educate him on his destiny as the last son of that planet. But when General Zod (Michael Shannon) arrives from Krypton, Superman decides he must help humans defend their planet.
"I think the world is ready for a new Superman, and what is different about this one is that there's a heavy grounding in reality," Cavill says. 'Yes, it's a fantastic story in the sense that there's this alien being with powers far beyond anything we've ever experienced as humankind, but how does he feel about that? How does he feel about having grown up being so different and not knowing what he is and why he is and who he is? And is the world going to be OK with his existence when they find out? People get upset about the tiniest of differences with religion and race; imagine if you are so different that you are impossible to even conceive. That must be a scary prospect."
Crowe is eager to tell his story about Cavill and their first encounter when the 17-year-old was an extra on Crowe's film Proof of Life while he attended a boarding school near the film's set in Britain. "My character was watching his son playing a game of rugby union and there was one kid on the field who was quite fluid and a dominant player who caught my eye anyway," Crowe begins his long and winding story. "In between takes, we were all standing around and this kid took it upon himself to come over and start a conversation and all his questions were about acting. A few days later we were leaving and I put together a little care package for the kid that played my son … and I decided to put together another for that kid because I remembered his name. As well as a Wallabies jersey, some sweets and some Vegemite, I gave him a photograph from Gladiator and wrote on it: 'Dear Henry, the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.' I guess I recognised him as a member of my tribe."
When Cavill hears that Crowe told the story, he tries to play down his brave choice to approach the actor not always known for being approachable. "I don't think of it as courage, but I think I was an honest young man," he says. "I remember thinking, 'I want to be an actor. There's an actor who is clearly doing very well, so why don't I go up and say hello?'"
Cavill was raised as one of five brothers in Jersey, on the Channel Islands off the coast of Normandy, France. At 13, he went to the Stowe Boarding School in Buckinghamshire and fell in love with acting. He was only 15 when he was spotted by a casting director looking to fill a role in 2002 film The Count of Monte Cristo, and this motivated the previously chubby schoolboy to lose 10 kilograms. "I was called 'Fat Cavill' at school, mostly because I was fat and my name is Cavill," he says, revealing a sense of humour.
The actor who got his first big break on the series The Tudors will replace Tom Cruise in Guy Ritchie's film adaptation of the TV series The Man from U.N.C.L.E., but he clams up when talking about plans for a Justice League spinoff film and whether his girlfriend, actor and mixed martial arts star Gina Carano, is in talks to play Wonder Woman. "All I will say is that one of the great things about the comic books is that when Superman and Wonder Woman do fight, there's that wonderful clash," he says with a wide grin. "I am looking forward to seeing who wins, that's for sure."