Shazam is the latest installment in the DC Extended Universe, but how much money did it cost to make? After some bumps in the road, Warner Bros. seems to have hit their stride when it comes to adapting their comic book properties. Last year's Aquaman became the highest-grossing DC film to date after passing $1 billion worldwide, and it received positive reviews to boot. The studio is hoping to continue that forward momentum with Shazam, which opens this week.
Directed by David F. Sandberg, the film is already poised to be a big hit. Early reviews are enthusiastically positive, and Shazam is Certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. Critics and audiences seem to be in agreement this is an entertaining and delightful superhero film, which bodes well for its commercial prospects. And because WB was very smart with handling their money, Shazam doesn't need to shatter any records to break even.
The production budget for Shazam is said to be in the range of $80-90 million. Some reports say it's closer to around $100 million, but whatever the case may be, Shazam is relatively cheap compared to similar titles.
It's extremely rare for a comic book movie's budget to be this low. Captain Marvel cost $152 million, while Aquaman had a price tag of $160 million - and both of those examples were relatively inexpensive within this particular genre. It makes sense WB didn't want to shell out too much money in order to get Shazam to the big screen. The character is an unproven commodity to general audiences, and there's no guarantee Shazam is an overwhelming box office success. This is evidenced by the film's projected opening weekend, which would be the lowest in the DCEU to date. Of course, given how economical the budget is, Shazam doesn't need to rewrite history to turn a profit. If the budget is $80 million, then it only has to gross around $160 million globally to make its money back.
Shazam should be able to hit that mark. WB wisely scheduled it on the calendar with buffers on either side of the MCU's next blockbusters, Captain Marvel and Avengers: Endgame. By now, the former has already done a majority of its damage at the box office, crossing the $1 billion mark worldwide. And the latter - even though tickets are selling like hotcakes - is still a few weeks away from reaching theaters. An argument can be made that Shazam faces a bit of an uphill climb in regards to standing out from the competition, but it should go down as another winner for DC.
- Shazam! (2019) release date: Apr 05, 2019
- Joker (2019) release date: Oct 04, 2019
- Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) (2020) release date: Feb 07, 2020
- Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) release date: Jun 05, 2020
- DC Super Pets (2022) release date: May 20, 2022
- The Batman (2021) release date: Jun 25, 2021
- The Suicide Squad (2021) release date: Aug 06, 2021
- Aquaman 2 (2022) release date: Dec 16, 2022