In the annals of Famous Facial Hair history, Henry Cavill’s glorious mustache surely deserves its own chapter. What began as a mere acting choice for a project soon blossomed into a full-on controversy. Cavill grew the furry friend for his role in Mission: Impossible – Fallout, suggesting the character choice himself. But while that actioner was in production last year, Warner Bros. was simultaneously running into major issues with Justice League and needed Cavill back for extensive reshoots. Since Cavill was under contract with Paramount Pictures, they released the actor to do his Justice League reshoots even though production on Mission: Impossible 6 was still ongoing—but under one condition. Cavill could not, should not, would not shave his mustache.
Paramount had the right to dictate the livelihood of Cavill’s facial hair since technically they were letting him go back to Justice League in good faith, but the studio didn’t want to have to resort to a fake mustache for Cavill to finish his Mission: Impossible work. No, why should their film suffer when it was Warner Bros.’ fault that Justice League reshoots were needed in the first place?
This internal discourse spilled over into the press, where we learned that as a result of Cavill’s facial hair, Warner Bros. had to resort to CGI to digitally remove Cavill’s mustache in his Justice League scenes. The result in the finished film is an uncanny valley that not even Robert Zemeckis would traverse, and indeed Superman’s monstrous digital lip spawned its own meme.
Principal photography on Mission: Impossible – Fallout has now wrapped, and with that out of the way Cavill has now finally shaved his mustache clean off (although wouldn’t it be ironic if that film needed reshoots and Cavill had to resort to a fake mustache after all?).