The first trailer for Shazam! was jam-packed with action, but it also featured the first look at The Wizard who grants Billy Batson the powers of a super hero.
In the film, Djimon Hounsou plays The Wizard, also known as Shazam. Coincidentally, Hounsou also reprises his Guardians of the Galaxy role Korath in Marvel's upcoming Captain Marvel. He also has another role in the DC Universe, as he plays The Fisherman King in James Wan's Aquaman.
Hounsou's The Wizard looks a little more intricate than the version seen in the comics. Usually, The Wizard is depicted as a bearded man wearing simple white robes. In the brief scene from the Shazam! trailer, the movie version is a bearded man wearing more ornate robes, with the familiar Shazam lightning bolt logo lighting up on his chest.
We see the Wizard call Billy (Asher Angel) while Billy is riding on a subway train. The doors open, and Billy sees the Wizard's throne.
"Say my name, so my powers will flow through you," the Wizard orders.
"But I don't know your name, sir," Billy replies.
After chuckling at first, Billy finally says the name, and a lightning bolt transforms him into a grown-up superhero played by Zachary Levi.
DC Comics made a big push to promote Shazam! at San Diego Comic-Con, since the movie opens in nine months. Attendees got an up-close look at Levi's costume, which looks far more colorful than any superheo costume seen in previous DC Comics movies. DC Comics also announced plans for a new Shazam comic written by Geoff Johns and drawn by Dale Eaglesham.
“I wanted to keep the shorter cape as a throwback to the original... It makes him feel a bit more Golden Age superhero, which is the vibe I’m going for," director David F. Sandberg recently told Entertainment Weekly about Shazam's costume.
The costume also includes nods to the New 52 Shazam costume, complete with a big lightning logo and hooded cape, as well as golden gauntlets that represent animated versions of the character.
Shazam does exist in the same universe set up by Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League, producer Peter Safran said, so the character could show up in other DC movies.
"I wouldn’t be surprised to see Shazam play a role in the DCU," Safran told Entertainment Weekly. "He exists in that world."
Shazam! also stars Jack Dylan Glazer as Freddy Freeman, Mark Strong as Dr. Thaddeus Sivana, Grace Fulton as Mary Bromfield, Adam Brody and Ross Butler. It was written by Henry Gayden and Darren Lemke.The film opens on April 5, 2019.
Photo credit: Warner Bros.