Although DC will be giving audiences plenty of its most popular heroes over the next few years, it will also dig deep into its catalogue of less popular heroes for inspiration as well. One such hero who will finally get his time to shine is none other than Captain Marvel, a.k.a Shazam. The Shazam movie has been in development for some time, and yet we still know very little about it. Now it seems that the movie will set itself apart by balancing its action and dramatic stakes with a juvenile sense of fun.
During a recent interview with Comicbook.com, Shazam producer Hiram Garcia opened up regarding the creative process of bringing child hero Billy Batson to the silver screen:
We have a character in Shazam that is a boy who is in this man's body who is having the ultimate fulfillment that I think all comic book fans and everyone can associate with. Like, what if you wake up one day and you can just do all this great stuff? And then on the other side [with Black Adam], you have this force of nature who is really anchored by what he lost in his family and that thread that he's bringing with him throughout this journey. There's a real grounding there. That combination of youth and enthusiasm and being in new to a world and then the place that Adam's coming from. It makes for a great dynamic that not only allows us to have not only real stakes, real story, and real emotion, but a ton of fun in the process.
If you’re familiar with the basic premise of Shazam as a character, then none of that should really come as a major surprise. The story will revolve around a young boy named Billy Batson who one day becomes endowed with the wisdom of Solomon, the strength of Hercules, the stamina of Atlas, the power of Zeus, the invulnerability of Achilles and the speed of Mercury. His tale is one of optimism as he faces off against his similarly powered arch nemesis, Dwayne Johnson's Black Adam, who seeks domination and destruction following the devastating loss of his family and home.
There’s plenty of material to be mined out of Shazam as a character. His whole shtick essentially reads like the movie Big set in the DC universe. Just look at this quick scene from the hit series Young Justice to get a sense of how a whole movie could pan out:
Based purely off of that quote, it would seem that Shazam represents a fairly notable departure from what we have come to expect from the overly grim DCEU. The movie seems like the ultimate form of wish fulfillment for a child sitting in the audience, and the team behind the movie won’t shy away from giving the titular hero ample opportunities to play around and actually have fun with his powers. It’s still incredibly early in the development process, but Shazam could end up becoming the Superman movie we always hoped for, but never got.
Although Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice seemingly misfired this past March, things have begun to seriously look up for the DCEU. We will keep you posted regarding any and all updates related to Shazam as they become available to us. The film is currently slated to hit theaters on April 5, 2019.