Zachary Levi Says You Don’t Need To Hate Captain Marvel To Love Shazam!

Shazam posing

It's no secret that superhero movies are everywhere. The genre is extremely popular, and able to make massive sums of money at the box office. If the fans are behind it, that is. With so many comic book adaptations in theaters, studios are challenged to craft blockbusters unique perspective, that will set it apart from the already bloated genre. Luckily for Warner Bros., DC is breaking new ground with David Sandberg's upcoming origin story Shazam!

Shazam! will bring the titular DC superhero to the big screen for the first time, and will tell a story with plenty of heart and comedy. Zachary Levi is playing one half the title character, as he'll be the heroic persona of 14-year old Billy Batson. There was a time when the character Shazam used to be called Captain Marvel, so the DC and Marvel rivalry has been once again heating up for each heroes' big movie. But Levi doesn't want to hear it, especially when it comes to throwing hate Brie Larson's way. As he tells it:

It came to my attention, what was going on, because I was on Twitter or something. And I was getting added by people that were saying what was very clearly fictitious, defaming things about Brie and about Captain Marvel. I’m not affiliated with anything; I’ve known Brie over the years and I think she’s delightful and talented. By the way she doesn’t need anybody sticking up for her. I was trying to talk to people who thought they were doing me a favor. They were like ‘We’re not gonna see that, we’re gonna see Shazam!’. You can just say you want to see Shazam!. You don’t have to go and speak ill of someone else in order to raise me or this movie up.

And just like that, Shazam has spoken. Because while Marvel and DC may have fought over the title of "Captain Marvel", Zachary Levi doesn't feel that sort of rivalry with Brie Larson's Marvel blockbuster. And he doesn't want his success to be at the cost of another comic book movie.

Zachary Levi's comments come from his recent conversation with The Associated Press ahead of Shazam!'s release. Comic book fans are very passionate, and the rivalry between DC and Marvel has been going on for decades. But Captain Marvel was met with a particular level of hate ahead of its release, and that's not something that Levi wants any part of.

Captain Marvel catching on fire

The rivalry between Shazam! and Captain Marvel comes from the comic book origins, where the mantle of "Captain Marvel" was fought for by both DC and Marvel comics. The name was originally held by the character played by Zachary Levi, while Carol Danvers went by Ms. Marvel. Eventually legal issues hampered the original character, and Marvel comics scooped up the name. As such, DC renamed the character Shazam.

The hate for Captain Marvel was due to Brie Larson's comments about diversity in the press. But that didn't stop the movie from getting solid reviews and making a ton of money at the box office. Now we'll just have to see if Shazam! follows suit.

Captain Marvel is in theaters now, and Shazam! will arrive on April 5th. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.