Black Adam (and Shazam!) producer Hiram Garcia explains why Dwayne Johnson is the perfect actor to bring the DC villain to life. Garcia is the president of productions for Dany Garcia and Johnson's Seven Bucks Production which produced several of The Rock's most notable films including Baywatch, Furious 7, Fate of the Furious, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle and Rampage.
Johnson's Black Adam was supposed to debut in David F. Sandberg's Shazam!, with many believing that he would play the movie's primary antagonist opposite Zachary Levi's titular character. But things eventually changed with the forthcoming movie now featuring a different villain in Doctor Sivana played by Mark Strong. At another point in time, Black Adam was also rumored to be introduced in Suicide Squad 2, but that doesn't look like it's going to be the case, especially since the sequel is apparently delayed.
Related: Is Suicide Squad 2 Still Happening?
Despite the lack of any official update from Warner Bros., Garcia assures the public that the project is moving along nicely behind the curtains. In a new interview with Collider, he talked about how Johnson settled for the superhero villain to be his first step into the widely popular genre. According to the producer, Johnson had been looking for a way to dip his toes into superhero films for quite a long time, which means that there was a lot of thought going into his decision to ultimately play the DC villain.
“Black Adam is definitely happening. We’re actually very deep into a script on it right now, which is coming along really well. I’m really excited with the story we’ve crafted. Look, I’ve always been a huge comic book fan. I’ve always had this dream, I’ve always wanted to—You know, you kind of have like these goals of like, ‘One day I’d love to be able to do this and this,’ and making a superhero movie was definitely always one of my dreams. For the longest time, you know you kind of have this living superhero in Dwayne Johnson, so I was always trying to figure out what’s the perfect character that will kind of fit him and his look and his build and his kind of edge and the attitude he’s got.
“Black Adam just made kind of great sense. It was this kind of really cool antihero, kicks ass, who believes in basically exacting justice in his way with a fascinating backstory, the history he has with regards to having been a former slave and freeing his people and then getting his abilities and what happened from there. So I pitched that to Dwayne early on, and he loved the idea, and we’ve just kind of kept it in the back of our mind. We had a great conversation with Warner Brothers one time years ago, and we all settled on this was our character.”
Sadly, aside from the confirmation that the Black Adam standalone is still a go, the time frame of its possible release is still unclear. Films that are in development can be scrapped off if things don't work well. Meanwhile, it can also be stuck in development for years especially if there's no urgency to roll it out. It's only until a project gets into production when people can have a good idea on when it's going to arrive in cinemas.
As of the moment, Warner Bros. and DC Films have four movies on the docket (Aquaman, Shazam!, Joker, and Wonder Woman 1984), and all of them will have been released before 2020. There is also a slew of projects in various stages of development such as Matt Reeves' The Batman, The Flash standalone, Birds of Prey, Suicide Squad 2, Green Lantern Corps, and Nightwing among others - all just waiting for their respective confirmed release dates. Admittedly, Black Adam doesn't sound to be as far along in development compared to some of the aforementioned films, meaning that it might take longer to actually see it on the big screen; unless, of course, the studio decides to fast track it.
While fans will have to wait a little while than initially expected to see Black Adam make his debut in the DCEU, Johnson remains attached to Shazam! just in a different way - serving as an executive producer. And maybe if people respond well to the first film, the sequel could finally feature the hero going up against the actor's villainous character.
- Aquaman (2018) release date: Dec 21, 2018
- Shazam! (2019) release date: Apr 05, 2019
- Joker (2019) release date: Oct 04, 2019
- Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) release date: Jun 05, 2020