Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has been teasing his involvement with the DC Extended Universe for many months now, even promising to bring about a “new era” for the DCEU as it supposedly undergoes a tonal shift away from the dark and brooding aspects that have made up a majority of the DC film properties. The actor will take up the mantle of anti-hero Black Adam in the upcoming Shazam! adaptation, which is still set to hit theaters in 2019.

While television actor Derek Theler has expressed interest in taking up the role of Shazam himself, there’s been nothing concrete from DC in regards to who could be playing the protagonist of the upcoming film. Still, a lot of the information has been coming from Johnson himself, who has been meeting with a lot of the bigwigs at DC lately about the future of Shazam! and general future of the DCEU. After a recent meeting, however, Aquaman director James Wan formally welcomed Johnson to the DCEU.

Posting on his Twitter account, Wan – who previously worked alongside The Rock on Furious 7 – formally expressed excitement at having Johnson “in the club.” This was in response to Johnson’s own tweet, where he detailed a meeting with the president of DC Entertainment, Geoff Johns, and expressed excitement at a new era for the DCEU.

These recent DCEU-related developments have proven somewhat inspiring for fans who have been waiting for a tonal shift for the DC film universe, and Johnson and Wan are perhaps two of the biggest proponents for bringing a little more fun into a franchise that has been more on the gloomy side with its initial installments. Wan has even gone as far as calling his upcoming Aquaman a “swashbuckling action adventure”, with the indication being it has more in common with an Indiana Jones adventure than the deconstructionist approach of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice.

There are certainly a portion of fans out there who agree with neither Johnson nor Wan and are quite happy with where the DCEU is heading so far, in spite of the poor critic reviews that have plagued the franchise thus far. Given how financially successful both Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad proved to be in 2016, there’s certainly an argument to be made that DC has a rabidly faithful fanbase. Regardless, it seems that the Johns – who was promoted to the President of DC Entertainment back around mid-2016 – is intent on bringing more critical prestige to the franchise. Time and more importantly, the upcoming release of Wonder Woman later in 2017, will tell if this proves to be the case, and will certainly help determine the direction of other upcoming DCEU films like Shazam!

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Source: James Wan

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