Warner Bros.’ long-awaited Shazam! film will be the next DCEU movie to go into production. The project was one of the original titles included in Warner Bros.’ initial DCEU film slate, but like many of the other films included in that lineup, progress on Shazam has been slow since then. Aside from the casting of Dwayne “The Rock Johnson” as the villainous Black Adam, the creative talent involved in the film has been shrouded in mystery for the past few years. And while other DCEU titles like The Flash and The Batman have undergone major behind-the-scenes creative shake-ups, Shazam has remained as one of the few projects said to be in constant development at the studio.
But this week appeared to signal a possible increase in progress on the movie, with a fresh report asserting that Shazam will begin filming sometime early next year. And now, with Warner Bros. set to make some serious announcements about the DCEU during their Saturday panel at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, it looks as though the plans for Shazam have finally been set.
THR is reporting that Shazam is currently slated to being principal photography in either January or February 2018, keeping it on-course for a 2019 release. This makes Shazam the next DCEU movie to begin filming. In addition, previously rumored Lights Out director, David F. Sanberg, is now formally set to direct the project, with Aquaman and Annabelle: Creation producer, Peter Safran, currently in talks to board the film as a producer. The report also confirms previous rumors that Dwayne Johnson will no longer be starring in Shazam as Black Adam, but will instead be solely leading a Black Adam spinoff film, that is being developed concurrently with Shazam.
This news also comes just days after Warner Bros. set two DCEU movie release dates in 2020 for currently unconfirmed projects, which will likely be revealed during the studio’s SDCC panel in a few days. With the future of the DCEU being somewhat up in the air over the past year especially, it looks as though Warner Bros. is looking to get multiple DCEU projects off the ground now.
Case in point: a Suicide Squad sequel may be finally coming close to nailing down a director and is eyeing a mid-2018 production start, while The Flash movie is apparently courting former Han Solo directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller right now. A Wonder Woman sequel is rumored to be announced at SDCC this year also but is still only in the early treatment writing stages of development. Meanwhile, Joss Whedon’s Batgirl movie won’t be able to make much forward progress until the filmmaker is done completing the Justice League reshoots and post-production – though Whedon’s own DCEU film is said to be one of the studio’s top priorities.
All the same, this news confirms that Shazam will be coming before any of those titles now, and similar to Aquaman, it boasts an exciting and talented horror filmmaker in David F. Sandberg at its helm. The director has emerged as one of the more sought after names in the film industry right now, following his work on both Lights Out and Annabelle: Creation. So he will, hopefully, be able to bring the appropriate level of flair and charisma to the highly-anticipated comic book adaptation – one that promises to be one of the most unique and fantastical superhero movies set to hit theaters over the next few years.
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