He may not be as well known as his other DC superheroes, but this weekend Shazam aka Billy Batson will be in cinemas around the UK and beyond! Having been delayed, reversioned and changed again, the making of this film has been a VERY long one. However before you go and watch it for yourself, here is everything you need to know about Shazam!
About the film
– The development of Shazam started in 2000 (nearly 20 years ago), however, it didn’t go anywhere for years. In 2013 it nearly became a TV series until the film was back on in 2014. Development of the film was later announced that year. Filming finished in May 2018.
– David F. Sandberg was announced as its director in July 2017.
– The film takes place in Philadelphia, but was filmed mostly in Toronto.
– This was going to be a film where Shazam meets with Black Adam but it turns out Black Adam will have his own film and then there will be a final film where the two will meet.
– Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson was asked to be a part of the film and was able to choose between playing Shazam or Black Adam. He tweeted his fans asking which one he should be and then made the decision to be Black Adam. This will be a different type of character he will play, seeing as he usually plays the hero and not the villain.
– In the early development of the film, the film was to be called ‘Billy Batson and The Legend of Shazam’.
– Apparently there will be no crossover between the other DC characters in this film. Henry Cavill was in talks to appear, but due to scheduling conflicts he was unable to film. Although producer Peter Safran did say there was potential for them to feature in future DCU films altogether.
– Filmmakers say their inspiration for the film was ‘Stranger Things’ and ‘Big’. There is a scene which has Shazam fight in a toy shop and he runs over a giant keyboard. This will be similar to the famous scene in ‘Big’ were Tom Hanks and Robert Loggia play the giant keyboard.
– It is the seventh film of the DC Universe.
– This will be Mark Strong’s fifth appearance in a comic-book film. Other films he has worked on are ‘Green Lantern’ and the Kingsman films.
– On July 21, 2018, the first teaser trailer was shown at San Diego Comic-Con during the Warner Brother’s panel.
– In July 2018 Benjamin Wallfisch was announced as the composer for Shazam!
– Before Shazam was part of the DC universe, the DC Comics sued Fawcett Comics for making the character too similar to Superman. Originally called ‘Captain Marvel’s adventures’. It would seem Shazam was more popular than Superman at the time and DC Universe didn’t like that. It seems that Shazam could only be more favourable than Superman as long as DC Comics owned both.
– Both Marvel and DC Comics have a hero called Captain Marvel. As you will see from our previous blog, Marvel’s film was released this year as well. DC Comics published their Captain Marvel comic first, however had to change the name due to Marvel owning the trademark for the name. DC Comics still produce named versions of Captain Marvel in print!
– Shazam had the lowest budget any of the DC films had when making their film.
– On the completion of the film, Sandberg (the Director) took to Instagram to share a photo of him in a suit that had been made entirely out of the same material that was used to create Shazam’s suit.
About the character
– Shazam is one of the most powerful heroes in the DC Universe, he takes on the combined abilities of Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles and Mercury. These names spell out Shazam if you hadn’t noticed.
– Shazam got his powers from an ancient wizard who noticed Billy after seeing him do good.
– Billy transforms into Shazam by just saying “Shazam!”
– Apparently one of his weaknesses is immaturity, which can’t really be helped when your’re a boy and have been given all of this power.
– The story behind Billy Batson is that he is a neglected orphan. He does have a sister but they were separated and their uncle stole their inheritance. His parents were killed by Black Adam (His arch nemesis).
– He is the youngest member of the justice league which is no surprise seeing as he is a child.