- Shazam! Fury of the Gods continues the story of the modern family of superheroes and introduces new gods to the universe.
- The release date of Shazam 2 was changed multiple times due to the pandemic, but finally released on March 17, 2023.
- The sequel features the return of Zachary Levi and Asher Angel in the titular role, along with an exciting cast of villains played by Rachel Zegler, Helen Mirren, and Lucy Liu. Black Adam does not appear in the sequel.
With plenty of shake-ups in the DC movie landscape, there are a lot of questions about what is happening with Shazam! Fury of the Gods. Warner Bros. and DC Films released Shazam! in theaters in 2019, and the movie became a rousing success, so fans immediately wondered when they’d next see Billy Batson in the DCEU timeline. Rumors about a Shazam 2 started circulating quickly, especially since Shazam! ended with Billy’s foster siblings all getting powers of their own. The sequel continues to follow this modern family of superheroes, while also expanding the universe and fleshing out its gods.
The first Shazam! film was directed by David F. Sandberg and starred Asher Angel as Billy Batson, a foster kid who gains magical abilities and who can transform into a superhero. When he says the word “Shazam,” he’s changed into the best version of his future adult self, a tall, muscular hero played by Zachary Levi. The film received strong early critical reviews and ended up being a hit with fans too, grossing a worldwide total of $366 million. The Shazam! movies are based on the DC Comics character of the same name, although Shazam used to be named Captain Marvel. With the DCU reboot making the status of several DC movies and characters less clear, it’s natural that audiences may have a lot of questions about Shazam! Fury of the Gods.
Shazam 2: Latest News
The release of Shazam 2 came in the midst of some franchise recalibration from DC that suggest it may be the last time audiences see this particular iteration of the character. James Gunn and Peter Safran announced their first projects for the new DCU, which includes a Superman reboot with Superman: Legacy and a Batman reboot with The Brave and the Bold, but contains no Shazam movie or installment tied to the character.
While the door was initially left open as to Aquaman and Wonder Woman would remain in the DCU as they are, a report by Variety states that none of the Justice League heroes are thought to be returning with their DCEU casting, suggesting that Shazam may also not return if the intention is to create a fresh slate. However, there are some instances of characters continuing with the same actors into the DCU like John Cena’s Peacemaker, which means it’s not outright impossible for Zachary Levi and Asher Angel to return in the new era of the franchise, though it does at this time appear unlikely.
Shazam 2: Release Date
Shazam 2 released on March 17, 2023. There was a lot of confusion around when the Shazam! sequel would come out, as the date was changed multiple times. Shazam 2 had previously been slated for April 1, 2022, leading to many jokes about it being an April Fools’ prank. Unfortunately, that release date had to be scrapped due to the pandemic, which saw it then rescheduled to November 2022, and then later June 2023. A DC announcement and trailer at San Diego Comic-Con then brought the release forward to the prime Holiday season slot on December 21st, 2022. However, come August 2022, the movie was again delayed to its final release date.
Shazam 2: Cast
Shazam 2 stars Zachary Levi and Asher Angel returning to the titular role of Shazam/Billy Batson, who reunites with most of the main cast of the original. Jack Dylan Grazer, Adam Brody, Djimon Hounsou, Meagan Good, Grace Fulton, Ross Butler, and D. J. Cotrona all return as Shazam’s allies and family. The villains in Shazam 2 have some exciting casting choices, with Rachel Zegler, Helen Mirren and Lucy Liu playing Anthea, Hespera and Kalypso respectively, known as The Daughters of Atlas.
Ezra Miller, Jason Momoa, and Ben Affleck were all shown in the Shazam 2 trailer in their respective DCU roles, but the Flash, Aquaman, and Batman do not appear in Shazam 2 – though Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman does make a surprise appearance. Along with the assembled cast, director David F. Sandberg also returned to helm the sequel after directing the first movie.
Black Adam Is Not In Shazam 2
When Black Adam was announced, there was immediate speculation around an inevitable meeting between Dwayne Johnson’s villain-turned-antihero and Levi’s Billy Batson. Fans hoping to see the long-awaited fight between Shazam and Black Adam will be left disappointed, as Dwayne Johnson’s anti-hero does not feature in the sequel. However, the actor has since teased via a tweet that “DC and Seven Bucks have agreed to continue exploring the most valuable ways Black Adam can be utilized in future DC multiverse chapters.”, meaning Black Adam may appear in the DCU reboot.
Despite Black Adam being the most famous Shazam villain in the comics, it was reported that Johnson was not a fan of Shazam as a character and pushed to ignore that connection in his movie. Instead, Johnson pushed for the return of Henry Cavill as Superman, who appeared in the end credits scene of Black Adam. Despite the strong reaction this cameo got from fans, it was announced shortly after that Cavill was done as Superman in the DCU, followed by Johnson confirming that Black Adam was not a part of the new DCU.
Shazam 2: Story Details
Hespera and Kalypso serve as the sequel’s primary villains, explaining the title of the sequel, Fury of the Gods. The two Daughters of Atlas seek revenge against the Wizard – who bestowed Billy with his powers originally – since the magician killed their father. Unfortunately, this places the Shazam-powered Vasquez family in direct conflict with them, which is made more complicated by Billy’s internal doubts about being worthy of wielding his superhero powers, and by his family’s less close dynamic, that serves to make him doubt his place among them as Billy Batson as well.
Ultimately, Shazam! Fury of the Gods carries some strong messages about family values and self-belief, though its hero is forced to sacrifice almost everything in order to try and save the day. While Shazam 2 saw some divided reviews in part because of this story, it’s a fitting sequel for the series, and a fitting potential final sendoff for this version of the character, should the DCU continue on without him.