Despite playing catch-up to the MCU for years, DC have persevered with their plans for the DCEU. After a solid, if underwhelming start with Man of Steel, and a rocky 2016 with the releases of Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad, the last two years have seen DC really get their act together.
With the releases of Wonder Woman and Aquaman, DC have two films that directly took the competition to Marvel. Aquaman went ahead and superseded all expectation when it broke the $ billion barrier at the box office.
From what we've seen from the light-hearted and witty trailers so far, Shazam! looks like a real blast.
Billy Batson, a 14-year-old school kid, has superhero powers bestowed upon him by an ancient and mysterious wizard. However, unlike most brooding superheroes, Batson, as any kid would be, is rather excited to get to grips with his new powers.
The film, which appears to be a mash-up of Tom Hanks' Big and Superman, looks like a joyous romp and could knock it out of the park for DC.
An interesting little tidbit about Shazam. The hero used to be known as Captain Marvel in the character's original Fawcett comic book run between 1939-53. However, owing to several legal disputes and Marvel comic's own hero of the same name, when DC acquired the character in 1972, their Captain Marvel was partially renamed Shazam and took on that title exclusively in 2011's comic book series.
Shazam - Zachary Levi
Billy Batson - Asher Angel
Freddy Freeman - Jack Dylan Grazer
Dr. Thaddeus Sivana - Mark Strong
The Wizard - Djimon Hounsou
Billy and Freddy's foster family: Grace Fulton as Mary Bromfield, Ian Chen as Eugene Choi, Jovan Armand as Pedro Peña and Faithe Herman as Darla Dudley. And Cooper Andrews and Marta Milans as Victor and Rose Vasquez, Billy and Freddy's foster parents.
Director: David F. Sandberg (Lights Out, Annabelle: Creation)
Writers: Henry Gayden (Earth to Echo)
Producers: Peter Safran (The Conjuring, Annabelle: Creation, Aquaman)
Where to watch: Theatres
When to watch: April 5, 2019
Synopsis: Billy Batson, a 14-year-old foster kid has superhero powers bestowed upon him by an ancient and mysterious wizard. Batson, along with friend and foster brother, Freddy Freeman, must discover and embrace Batson's new powers to combat the threat from the conniving Dr Thaddeus Sivana.
The first trailer for Shazam! was released in July last year. The trailer instantly showed off the premise of the film and Billy Batson's first encounter with the mysterious wizard.
The second teaser arrived in January 2019 and showed off much more of the film's light-hearted tone and humour.
Meet Shazam! This little featurette was released in Febuary and gives potential viewers the low-down on just who Billy Batson and his hero alter ego are. Zachary Levi, who is playing Shazam and the adult version of Batson, explains that unlike most dark and brooding heroes, Batson is thrilled to try out his new powers.
And finally, we come to the latest trailer. Released just this week, the second official trailer shows us largely the same content as the previous teasers but expands on some of the film's jokes. Most notably, when Billy throws a Batman toy at a pursuing villain and screams "get him Batman!"
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