The DCEU’s future seems to be in question after the less-than-stellar performance of Justice League (despite being in the top 10 grossing films of 2017), but Warner Bros. and DC Comics are trucking along with new releases and have finally announced a release date for the upcoming Shazam! movie.
Earth’s Mightiest Mortal Shazam, formerly known as Captain Marvel, will get his theatrical debut on April 19, 2019 – four months after Aquaman hits in December 2018.
Shazam was first announced way back in 2014 and has floated around in various states of will-it and won’t-it since then. Things have been picking up lately. Actor Zachary Levi was confirmed to play Shazam back in October, and has compared the role to the classic Tom Hanks movie Big.
“What I can say is I am just out of my mind excited! I get to do my version of Big, basically. It’s like Superman meets Big and that’s just so fun. I get to be a superhero that’s excited to be a superhero, and I think that’s refreshing,” Levi said recently when speaking to Entertainment Tonight.
Director David F. Sandberg said something similar last summer to the Toronto Sun:
“The big attraction to me with that character is the fact that every kid dreams of being Superman, right? I mean I certainly did, and [Billy Batson] is a kid that gets that chance. He gets to become the superhero. So it’ll be Big with superpowers in a way In terms of what people can expect, I think this will be one of the more fun or lighthearted movies so far in the DC universe. It will certainly be a departure.”
The DCEU has certainly had a tone problem every since Man of Steel took Superman in a dark direction, and so far has held onto that tone with the exception of Wonder Woman and the all-over-the-place Suicide Squad. With Aquaman, Shazam, and a Wonder Woman sequel on the way, hopefully that’s going to change. It just won’t be the big two leading the charge.
Aquaman hits theaters December 21, 2018, followed by Shazam on April 19, 2018.