Shazam!, the latest film of DC Comics and Warner Bros., won over the box office in its opening weekend, as reported by Variety. The film’s lighter-hearted tone than the rest of the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) resonated with audiences resulting in a 93 percent score on Rotten Tomatoes. And with only one weekend under its belt, the sequel has already been confirmed, as reported by The Wrap, with the original screenwriter returning as well.
Shazam! adapts the comic book story about a young boy being chosen to serve as the champion for an ancient wizard, while an evil power-hungry man tries to usurp the same power. The movie has been long in development and stars Asher Angel as the young Billy Batson and Djimon Hounsou as the Wizard who grants him his powers. Upon getting his powers, young Batson transforms into the grown-up superhero Shazam, played by Zachary Levi.
The movie reflects a much drastic change in tone than the other DCEU movies, focusing more on a more light-hearted approach, along with a story that’s not all doom and gloom, and charming performances by all involved. Shazam! has been directed by Adam F. Sandberg (Annabelle: Creation) and written by Henry Gayden (Earth To Echo).
The following will feature Spoilers from Shazam!, so be warned before proceeding any further.
Unlike other films in the DCEU, Shazam! showcased a story that focused more on the characters and their growth, with a heavy theme on family, instead of any world-ending stakes or larger than life action. The movie was very much an homage to superhero films in general, reveling in its own genre. It’s a refreshing change of pace after constant criticisms of being too dark and gritty, as covered by CBR. One of the biggest surprises of Shazam! happened to be how Billy’s new foster family all ended up getting imbibed with the same powers as Shazam, and became their own superhero team, with Adam Brody as the grown-up hero version of Billy’s foster brother Freddy (Jack Dylan Grazer).
The sequel can expect even more cameos and further development of the family as superheroes and how that dynamic will factor into their future adventures. Dwayne The Rock Johnson has already been confirmed for many years in the role of Black Adam, Shazam’s arch nemesis, as recently confirmed by Collider. As further confirmed by Johnson on his own Instagram account, Black Adam is supposed to be featured in his own movie before going up against Levi. However, with Shazam! performing so well, a Black Adam cameo or tie-in for the sequel would not be out of the realm of possibility.
Shazam! is currently in theatres.