Dwayne Johnson's Black Adam movie will bring the Justice Society of America, DC Comics' original superhero squad, to the big screen. The film already cast Aldis Hodge as Hawkman and Noah Cenetineo as Atom Smasher. Doctor Fate will also appear in the film, and new rumors offer a possible hint at what fans should expect from the DC Comics Lord of Order. The Illuminerdi reports that the studio envisions the relationship between Kent Nelson and Nabu -- the human who wears Fate's helmet and the wizard within it -- as something akin to Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. They will sound and behave entirely differently from one another. If you're a Marvel fan, think Doctor Strange but with the Hulk's dueling personalities.
The studio is looking to cast a 30-something male "academic" type as Nelson. Despite being 51 years old, Sam Rockwell is reportedly the template they're using for the character. In the film, Doctor Fate reportedly reads minds, uses telekinesis, and manipulates time.
Gardner Fox and Howard Sherman created Doctor Fate, who first appeared in More Fun Comics #55 in May 1940. In the DC Comics universe, Nelson has seen several successors take over Doctor Fate's role as the DC Universe itself has undergone several reboots and resets. Doctor Fate is a mystical powerhouse of the DC Universe. Nabu fights for the cause of good but can veer towards an extreme "lawful good" philosophy, prizing cosmic order above compassion for those beings living in the universe.
A hero with Doctor Fate's power may be what the JSA needs to keep Johnson's Black Adam in check. Johnson warned during the film's DC FanDome panel that his character isn't your typical DC Comics hero, describing him as a "ruthless keeper of justice."
"He is the judge, the jury, and the executioner, and he believes in an eye for an eye," Johnson said. He will always do everything he can to protect his people, more so protect his family. The superheroes have to exhibit a little bit of restraint when it comes to taking care of the bad guys if you will, or taking care of the people who are opposite them, who are opposing them who are in their way. But this idea that you could take all of Black Adam's powers, and he does not practice restraint. That makes for a really powerful combination, and one that's explosive one that's very dangerous, and one that is very likable — to me, at least."
Black Adam opens in theaters on December 22, 2021.