Shazam! Fury Of The Gods Director Talks Bailing On Comic Book Movies, Stress Of ‘Online Discourse’ Following Low Critic Scores

Zachary Levi as Shazam in Fury of the Gods
(Image credit: Warner Bros. Pictures)

Shazam! Fury of the Gods is a superhero movie hitting theaters at a very strange time. We know that a whole new slate of DC movies and series are on the way, and it’s unclear what, if any, future the current Shazam! franchise has there. The one thing that we do know for sure is that director David F. Sandberg is done with the series, and while he doesn’t regret making superhero films, he’s also glad to be moving on.

The first Shazam! film was a critical and audience favorite, but the sequel hasn’t done quite as well. The movie did open at number one at the domestic box office this past weekend, but with an anemic $30 million. Having said that, David F. Sandberg took to Twitter to point out that the movie has the best Rotten Tomatoes audience score of his career, even if it also has the worst critics score. Sandberg said goodbye to superhero movies on Twitter, adding...

As I’ve been saying for a while now I’m very eager to go back to horror (as well as trying some new things). After six years of Shazam I’m definitely done with superheroes for now. Just to be clear, I don’t regret even for a second making the Shazam movies. I’ve learned so much and gotten to work with some truly amazing people. Will forever be grateful that I got to direct two of these! They’ve been very challenging but valuable experiences.

Sandberg says he wasn't expecting the response to Fury of the Gods to be the same as the first film, and he knew the movie's opening weekend box office wouldn't be as impressive. But he did think it would be better received than it was, as he still believes he made a good film.

Critics were certainly rougher on Shazam! Fury of the Gods than they were last time. Having said that, the movie is currently sitting at 52%, which, while that is considered a "rotten" score, the first of Sandberg's directorial efforts, it also means more than half the total reviews are generally positive. 

Shazam! was never mentioned by name during the announcement of the future of the DCU, and many of the franchises that came in the previous generation of DC Films are being put on pause if not entirely canceled. If Shazam! does somehow continue, it will need a new director. 

Sandberg is clear that he enjoyed making these two movies and whatever people think of them he doesn't regret it. Having said that, there is one part of making superhero movies that the director will not miss, the endless discourse about them online. He continued...

One thing I’ve really been looking forward to is disconnecting from the superhero discourse online. A lot of that stresses me out so much and it will be nice not having to think about that anymore.

At the end of the day money talks in Hollywood, and the box office take for Shazam! Fury of the Gods will likely be the determining factor in whether or not the franchise moves forward. 

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.