Previously, Sndyer had released a version of the photo that was blurred to make it impossible to make out much int he way of details. This new photo, released on the director's Vero account, came with the caption "I knew when I saw him he was my Superman."
Cavill auditioned in a replica of the 1978 Superman: The Movie costume, as worn by Christopher Reeve. This is not, in an odd twist of fate, the oldest available photo of Cavill in a professional-quality Superman costume, since the actor auditioned for Superman: Flyby. While he didn't get the part and ultimately the movie never happened, an image of Cavill in a shiny, metallic Superman costume made the rounds around the time Man of Steel came to home video.
"If you can put on that suit and pull it off that's an awesome achievement," Snyder told Entertainment Weekly of Cavill's audition in 2011. "He walked out, and no one laughed. Other actors put that suit on, and it's a joke, even if they're great actors. Henry put it on, and he exuded this kind of crazy-calm confidence that just made me go 'Wow.' Okay: This was Superman.'"
Cavill's role in the upcoming Justice League movie hasn't been fully fleshed out yet: after years of criticisms of the approach to Superman Snyder took in Man of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, comments during the Justice League set visit indicated that the filmmakers wanted to go with a more hopeful, traditional take on Batman, Superman, and the other superheroes of the DC Universe in the next movie.
What's really evident, when you compare this image to later photos of Cavill in the Man of Steel and Batman v Superman suits, is exactly how much he bulked up for the role -- something that was discussed quite a bit at the time, but it's easier to see when you have such a stark contrast.
You can see the full image in the attached image gallery, along with an image from Cavill's Superman: Flyby test footage.
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