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The decision to hire horror director David Sandberg to helm DC's Shazam movie may seem like an odd choice, but the director himself is really looking forward to the opportunity. While Sandberg clearly loves horror and says he certainly plans to do more in the future, he also is really excited to do something different. According to Sandberg...
This will be very different than what I've done in the feature space, because it's not a horror movie and it's a much lighter tone. But it's something that I look forward to trying out, even though I plan to return to horror in some fashion. My background, back in Sweden, before I started doing horror shorts, I was doing animated comedy shorts. It's not totally alien to me to have more of a comedy approach. I look forward to taking that on in a feature.
David Sandberg directed Lights Out along with the upcoming Conjuring prequel Annabelle: Creation, so the shift to a comic book superhero movie is going to be a big one as the tone will certainly be different, as will, we would expect, the budget. However, if David Sandberg is any way apprehensive about all these changes, he hides it well in his conversation with Moviefone. As much as the director obviously loves to make horror movies, he says he'll be back in the genre eventually, it's not surprising to hear that he's looking forward to doing something a bit different. Everybody likes a little variety in life, right?
And David Sandberg makes it clear that he's not going into Shazam completely blind. He has made projects with lighter tones before, it's just that previously those projects were limited to animated shorts so he's never made a feature quite like this. Sandberg also seemingly suggests something that we had certainly suspected, that Shazam may have a much lighter tone than even most superhero movies. Sandberg specifically makes reference to a "comedy approach" which would imply that Shazam may be more of a comedy than an action movie. It's not that surprising, the character of Shazam, in the comics, is actually a young boy who gains the power to transform into an adult superhero. That's an inherently humorous premise and it would appear the new film will embrace it rather than changing things to make it more serious.
Now that David Sanberg is officially on board as director, he has the minor task ahead of him of casting the lead in the film. Thus far there haven't even been any significant rumors about who might take the part. While we expected Dwayne Johnson, who has been set to take the part of Black Adam for years, to be involved, recent word is that he won't appear in Shazam after all.
David Sandberg has certainly proven himself an accomplished horror movie director and we can't wait to see what he does with Shazam. The superhero movie is scheduled to go into production early next year.