There’s a little comic book magic emanating from DC towers today as Entertainment Weekly has premiered our first official look at Zachary Levi in costume as Shazam!
The 2019 spinoff stars boy wonder Billy Batson (Disney Channel star Angel Asher), who one day encounters a strange and mysterious wizard (Djimon Hounsou) while riding the subway. Turns out he’s spent years – if not decades – searching for his one true successor, only to cross paths with the young, wide-eyed Billy when all hope seems lost.
And the rest is history; Asher’s 14-year-old is imbued with god-like abilities inspired by Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles, and Mercury – he need only say the word “SHAZAM!” to activate them. But as EW’s exclusive attests, Billy’s undying love of soda remains intact.
Pictured here as the full-grown (and beefed-up) Zachary Levi, Billy Batson is standing next to fellow orphan Freddy Feeman (Jack Dylan of It fame). The second image, meanwhile, is pulled from Levi’s Instagram feed and helps bring the actor’s physical transformation into perspective.
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When it comes to Shazam’s famous suit, though, turns out director David Sandberg (Lights Out) sought inspiration from the character’s animated shows, along with the original comics, resulting in an old-school guise for Zachary Levi’s DCEU debut.
In doing so, Sandberg harkens back to the Golden Age of superheroes, and the filmmaker also offered a little more insight into that red-and-gold super-suit while speaking with EW:
I wanted to keep the shorter cape as a throwback to the original because that’s something that sets him apart from Superman or Batman. It makes him feel a bit more Golden Age superhero, which is the vibe I’m going for. I don’t know if [the suit is] crazy big if you look at some of the others — look at Batman.
Shazam! drops into theaters on April 5th, 2019.