'Shazam!' Star Zachary Levi Addresses "Fake Muscles" Controversy

Some fans were surprised when Zachary Levi was announced to be playing the lead role in Shazam!, bringing the superhero formerly known as Captain Marvel to the big screen for the first time. But the actor has worked hard to fulfill the spandex the best he can.

That hasn't stopped people from doubting Levi's physical attributes, with Men's Health magazine even claiming the actor's Shazam! costume has fake muscles. The outlet posted an article about the possibility of padding in the suit, writing "Sorry Zachary Levi, but we're still not buying it".

The actor responded with his own deprecating tweet:

(Photo: Zachary Levi)

The "slow news day" comment is particularly scathing, but we're not here to throw stones there.

Ever since the casting was announced, Levi has documented his regiments alongside his friend and photographer Eric Blackmon, revealing how he's bulking up for the role. Though Warner Bros. have yet to officially reveal the costume, paparazzi photos have shown the actor has taken to the superhero role very well

Not much is known about Shazam!, though set photos have indicated the movie is likely to be similar to the character's New 52 origin story from Justice League, by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank.

Asher Angel will play the character's younger alter ego Billy Batson, who will live at a foster home alongside classic Marvel Family characters such as Freddie Freeman and Mary, though it's not clear if she will be Mary Batson at this point.

Mark Strong is set to play one of the character's classic villains.

"I'm playing an evil bastard called Doctor Sivana, they are always the best characters to play, the most fun." Strong revealed to Celebretainment. "I was Sinestro in Green Lantern, which I though was a rather good film, but it didn't do what they wanted. So I feel like I've got unfinished business in the DC world. I played a pretty evil character in that, and he was meant to get even worse in the second one but that never happened, but I think I'm going to get the chance to do that in Shazam!, I hope so."

The synopsis for the movie gives a glimpse into the film's plot:

We all have a superhero inside us, it just takes a bit of magic to bring it out. In Billy Batson’s (Angel) case, by shouting out one word—SHAZAM!—this streetwise 14-year-old foster kid can turn into the adult Super Hero Shazam (Levi), courtesy of an ancient wizard. Still a kid at heart—inside a ripped, godlike body—Shazam revels in this adult version of himself by doing what any teen would do with superpowers: have fun with them! Can he fly? Does he have X-ray vision? Can he shoot lightning out of his hands? Can he skip his social studies test? Shazam sets out to test the limits of his abilities with the joyful recklessness of a child. But he’ll need to master these powers quickly in order to fight the deadly forces of evil controlled by Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Strong).

Shazam! premieres in theaters April 5, 2019.


Are you excited to see Levi take the big screen as this classic DC Comics superhero? Let us know in the comments!

(h/t TheWrap)