In news that will likely surprise no one, it has been revealed via THR that Dwayne Johnson’s Black Adam, the villain of the upcoming DC Extended Universe Shazam movie, will be getting his own solo spinoff film.
According to the new report, the Black Adam film will be developed concurrently with Shazam, so fans of the Captain Marvel character should rest assured that his long-gestating adaptation isn’t being replaced. The new movie stems from last week’s meeting between Johnson and DC Films co-head Geoff Johns, after which Johnson took to Twitter to announce his excitement for the upcoming “hope, optimism, & fun” that would be replacing the much-maligned “gritty” version of the DC Comics adaptations we’ve been getting in recent years. How that translates to a film about a slave-turned-supervillain remains to be seen, but from a production standpoint, moving forward with Black Adam before Shazam certainly makes sense.
For starters, an actor to play Shazam has yet to be cast, and Johnson has only become an even bigger movie star since his Black Adam casting (which began gestating back in 2008). According to the new report, “it made no sense” to execs “to have a man of Johnson’s stature be just a villain and a supporting character in an expensive tentpole.”
The news seems to suggest that the Black Adam film will in fact arrive before Shazam, in order to introduce the character before pitting him against DC’s “Big Red Cheese.” That likely means further delays for Shazam, which was originally projected to arrive in 2019. Could Black Adam be taking that spot as well? Time will tell, but of all the announced upcoming DC Extended Universe films, I suspect that this one will be given a fast track due to Johnson’s superstardom.