Since the film was announced as part of DC’s cinematic universe in 2014, Shazam‘s estimated release date was some time in 2019. This past Friday, Warner Bros. officially slated Shazam for release on April 5, 2019, causing the studio to drop an untitled film slated for July 27, 2018. The film will star Zachary Levi as the teenager-turned-adult godlike hero, alter ego of the teenager himself Billy Batson, played by Asher Angel. Created in 1939 by C.C. Beck and Bill Parker, Billy Batson, the teenager, by the utterance of “Shazam!” becomes a hero with the power of six gods!
With production starting in less than a month on a film that now has an endgame, it’s interesting to look back at the journey of bringing the character to the big screen. Plans for the film were being made, and, much like Man of Steel, it’s tone was going to be affected by the success of The Dark Knight. After a writer’s departure due to the change in tone, the film eventually got cancelled, but was resurrected in the conception of DC’s own cinematic universe.
Now, the film is being helmed by David F. Sandberg, director of films like Lights Out and Annabelle: Creation that also deal with the supernatural affecting kids. Levi, who is well-known for his role as the always-youthful titular character in the television series Chuck, has spoke on his enthusiasm both mentally and physically portray Shazam. The cast also includes Jack Dylan Grazer, who portrayed Eddie Kaspbrak in 2017’s It (who I thought would end up playing Billy Batson but will luckily be playing his closest friend Freddy Freeman), Grace Fulton, Ian Chen, and Cooper Andrew, who portrays Jerry on The Walking Dead, as Billy’s group home foster father.
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who was once apart of the film as Black Adam, a character which is now getting his own film, leaves us with hope, not just for this film, but DC films to come:
“I think they’ve got a great plan over there with him and I wish those guys the best of luck […] Those guys are gonna do great with it.”
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Written by: Mike Guimond