Like the MCU, the DC Extended Universe is plotted out years in advance. As we’ve witnessed with the former studio, those tentative titles are often switched around and even deleted from the schedule. (I’m talking about you, Inhumans.) The same applies to Warner Bros’ roster of DC films, that’s currently working against a tide of negative responses this year aimed at Batman V Superman and Suicide Squad. But let’s not dwell on that, as we’ve got Shazam to look forward to! Yes, it’s still happening.
Producer Dany Garcia spoke to Newsweek recently, allaying all fears that the Shazam adaptation may get bumped off the slate. Most importantly, Garcia confirms a major detail about the film’s placement within the Warner Bros. continuity – it’s actually in it:
“Shazam! is to live in the same world [as the other films] but we have incredible autonomy over this brand and franchise. We are working with a different team, different producers, directors… it’s a different set-up.
“We don’t feel fettered by, or constrained by, the successes or failures and challenges of the other projects. That was a key component to our participation—that we be able to control the tone and the voice, and do it the way we want to.”
It sounds like Garcia’s saying there’s an obligation toward the various storyline elements from previous movies that Shazam might have to address. Other than that, she and co-producer/star Dwayne Johnson have a fair amount of freedom.
“It needs to be of the world. You’ve got Justice League, Wonder Woman with a different director, so you’re going to see different points of view. I think by the time we land with [Shazam!] we’ll fit nicely within the world that’s been created, but not such a shorthand relationship. [It’ll be] enough that people say, ‘Oh, this is within the family,’ but the culture will be a little different.”
Outside of today, the most recent updates on the movie hail from Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who’s excited to be playing the film’s villain Black Adam. Garcia adds that they’re focusing efforts on getting the tone right for his character:
“We’re getting (script) drafts in…it’s important to make sure we get the tone right for Black Adam, which is (The Rock’s) part. We don’t mind taking our time. We’re being very careful with each act and scene to go back and layer in as much as possible.”
That’s all going to take energy and commitment from all those involved, especially as the lead role is as yet uncast. Johnson is confident, however, that Shazam will arrive in theaters prior to its scheduled date of April 5, 2019.