Billy Batson is up against it.
With news that Mark Strong, arguably one of Hollywood’s favorite bad guys, has clinched the role of Doctor Sivana – the “evil bastard” among DC’s roster of villains – we’re now learning that Shazam! will feature a Black Adam cameo, after all.
First reported by That Hashtag Show, Dwayne Johnson’s musclebound anti-hero has been earmarked for a spinoff movie of his own, though Shazam! director David F. Sandberg chose to remove Adam from the Billy Batson origin story in fear that Johnson’s charismatic baddie would overshadow – or at the very least undermine – Billy’s transformation into the titular, god-like entity.
THS has potentially thrown a spanner in the works, though, as the outlet’s character breakdowns make reference to a “mysterious man” who’s described as Shazam’s underling. Black Adam, perhaps?
“THADDEUS BODOG SIVANA – “Evil sorcerer who regenerates from death with world domination on his mind.” Supporting Lead Male”
“BEAUTIA SIVANA – “Sivana’s devoted daughter. When he does not return her love, she changes loyalties and helps Billy out.” Supporting Lead Female
Thaddeus Bodog Sivana belongs to Mark Strong, though this profile indicates that Shazam!‘s big bad will be more of an “evil sorcerer” than a conniving scientist. On the other hand, Magnificus and Beautia are Sivana’s two children, who both cross paths with the young Billy Batson as he undergoes his radical transformation.
MAGNIFICUS SIVANA – “Sivana’s incredibly giant and strong son that has a huge battle with Shazam.” Supporting Lead Male”
“SHAZAM – “Elderly wizard who is forced to give his powers to a young boy before the boy is ready.” Supporting Lead Male”
“MYSTERIOUS MAN – “Shazam’s underling.” Cameo Male”
But perhaps more than anything else, it is the fifth character – one known only as the “Mysterious Man” – who has sparked heated debate online. As That Hashtag Show so rightly points out, DC veteran Geoff Johns effectively ruled out a Black Adam cameo at last year’s San Diego Comic-Con. That strategy may well have changed, though, particularly now that Warner Bros. has appointed Walter Hamada at the helm of DC Films. And let’s face it, they don’t call Dwayne Johnson ‘franchise viagra’ for nothing.