DC’s upcoming superhero movie Shazam has an official released date. It will hit theaters on April 19, 2019, and is now the third confirmed movie on the the studio’s slate together with this year’s Aquaman and Wonder Woman 2, which arrives in November 2019.
The Shazam release date has been rumored for some time; DC first announced it back in 2014, but it subsequently disappeared from the schedule. Since then the studio has undergone much upheaval, with rumored films never happening and other ones cancelled, not to mention various changes of personnel behind-the-scenes.
Shazam will be directed by David F. Sandberg, who previously helmed the horror hits Annabelle: Creation and Light’s Out. In October, Zachary Levi was announced in the lead role of Billy Batson. Levi is no stranger to the superhero genre–he is already part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, having played Fandral in Thor: The Dark World and Thor: Ragnarok.
Sandberg previously hinted that Shazam will be a lot lighter in tone than other films in the DC movie universe. "The big attraction for me with that character is the fact that every kid dreams of being Superman, right? I mean I certainly did, and [Billy Batson] is a kid that gets that chance," he said. "He gets to become the superhero. So it’ll be big with superpowers in a way. In terms of what people can expect, I think this will be one of the more fun or lighthearted movies so far in the DC universe. It certainly will be a departure."
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson was previously announced in the role of Shazam’s nemesis Black Adam, but it was subsequently confirmed that he will not feature in Shazam. However, he is still set to appear in a spin-off movie.
Shazam first appeared in 1939, when he was known by the name Captain Marvel. The character was bought by DC in 1971, when he was renamed, due to Marvel’s ownership of the name Captain Marvel. A live action Shazam TV show was broadcast in the mid-70s, while an animated show followed in 1981.