Zachary Levi, the former Chuck star and Psych villain who will play the role of Shazam in the forthcoming DC superhero movie Shazam!, wants a piece of Henry Cavill's Superman.
The Man of Steel is referenced repeatedly in the upcoming movie, with Easter eggs around the group home where Billy Batson lives with his friend (and superhero super-fan) Freddy Freeman...and that apparently kept Levi thinking the whole time he was on set up in Toronto.
“Shazam and Superman have iconic battles throughout the history of the comic books,” Levi told Entertainment Weekly during a Comic Con interview, “because Captain Marvel/Shazam is the only one who has a shot of beating Superman — and has. Listen, Cavill. I’m not trying to start anything, but don’t start nothing, there won’t be nothing….Yeah, that would be pretty fun to do that.”
Back in April, on the day Action Comics #1,000 hit the stands and almost everyone involved with DC's media properties was taking time out to make social media tributes to the Man of Steel, Levi shared an image of Shazam punching Superman.
While both characters are shining examples of good that serve as inspiration to everyday people and other superheroes alike, they have often been depicted as being at cross purposes. Originally seen as a flagrant knockoff of Superman, Shazam -- then known as Captain Marvel -- quickly became the top-selling superhero in the market, and lawsuits flew. EC Comics even took a shot at DC's inability to stop the Captain Marvel train in an issue of MAD, which reportedly galvanized the folks at DC against both EC and Captain Marvel.
Over the years, the pair had numerous notable dust-ups, the most commonly cited for a generation of fans that includes Levi being their climactic battle in Alex Ross and Mark Waid's Kingdom Come, in which the two battled for the future of the metahuman population. Since the publication of that story over 20 years ago, the idea of Superman and Shazam being rivals has re-entered the public consciousness in a big way.
The Worlds of DC films ahead include Aquaman on December 21st, Wonder Woman 2 on November 1, 2019, Shazam on April 5, 2019, Cyborg in 2020, and Green Lantern Corps in 2020, along with numerous undated films in various stages of development.