It’s been less than two months since Dwayne Johnson brought his electrifying DC anti-hero Black Adam to life in theaters. The epic, which was a debut for the character on the silver screen, told the story of vengeful Teth Adam who is forced to navigate an unlikely path as Khandaq’s protector after being granted powers that pull strength from Egypt’s powers that be. Hollywood giant Johnson may have been vocal about how he fought to bring Teth Adam’s origin story to fruition but the actor reportedly turned down a chance to rehash him in the upcoming Shazam! Fury of The Gods sequel.
According to The Wrap Johnson reportedly “passed on doing a cameo in Shazam 2 when he was asked.” Whilst this has not been confirmed, if this is the case, the news is a massive disappointment to audiences who were hoping to see Johnson‘s Black Adam and Zachary Levi‘s Shazam go toe-to-toe (or bolt-to-bolt) in the forthcoming DC phases.
The two characters, who share more than their signature lightning bolt emblems, have a long history together resulting in an archnemesis of magnanimous proportions. In the comics, Adam, who becomes unscrupulous due to the magnitude of his power, is a predecessor to Billy Batson, a.k.a Shazam. As Adam also starts out as a good and worthy human, he is granted powers by the same wizard who later goes on to deem Billy deserving of the same gifts. Teth Adam is then exiled and forced into a 5,000-year-long sleep after failing to use his gifts for good. However, when awoken, Billy is the target of much of his terror due to the parallel in their abilities. Hence, you can see why a potential alignment of the two characters coming face to face in the DCU would’ve been enough to send fans into overdrive.
The news comes amid a humungous shakeup for DC Studios under the guidance of chiefs James Gunn and Peter Safran. Unfortunately, in what was finally starting to be an exciting time for fans of the DC universe, it seems many of the big projects audiences were looking forward to now have tenuous futures. Despite Henry Cavill making a surprise mid-credits appearance in Johnson‘s Black Adam as Superman, fans were dealt a shock blow when the actor revealed he would not be rehashing his red-caped counterpart after all – despite announcing a formal return to the character just weeks prior. Although, there are still plans to carry the Kal-El legacy forward whilst focusing on the earlier aspects of the character’s story. Other characters who are marred in uncertainty are favorites Wonder Woman, Aquaman and the Justice League. If news Johnson turned down a cameo in Shazam 2 emerges to be true, it’s plausible the wider DC chaos could have impacted the decision.
Given how quickly things are changing in the DCU, anything is possible, so let’s hope a Black Adam-Shazam showdown does take place at some point in the future.