Shazam: Fury of the Gods hasn’t had the opening that DC was hoping for – could the hero still fit in James Gunn’s new DCU?
It’s been known for quite some time now that DC was handing over the reins of their upcoming television and movie projects to James Gunn. After the lack of success from the Snyderverse and the constant badgering for change from fans on the Internet, DC finally decided to let Gunn give it his best go. However, it was announced just a couple of months ago that the four upcoming DC movies (Shazam 2, The Flash, Blue Beetle, and Aquaman 2) would all still be getting released and would be considered part of Gunn’s new DCU.
Well, this past weekend Shazam: Fury of the Gods was released worldwide… and the future doesn’t look great for him. Unfortunately, the movie has grossed less than $75 million worldwide at the box office and after a week of release has still yet to break the films budget. In other words, this may have been Shazam’s last sighting. That said (spoilers) the movie did contain mid/end-credit scenes that implied the character could still have a future in Gunn’s new DCU, despite the underwhelming performance at the box office. So, let’s take a look at where Shazam could still be part of James Gunn’s DCU.
Let’s get the elephant in the room out of the way. Yes, the mid/end-credit scenes in the movie were clearly trying to set up a third installment for the Shazam character and allow the franchise to end with a conclusive trilogy. However, the mid/end-credit scenes didn’t predict how poorly the movie would do at the box office, meaning that a third movie will most likely never see the light of day.
Nevertheless, while a third Shazam movie wasn’t part of Gunn’s recently announced master plan for his new DCU, it is still the smallest of possibilities that Shazam will get a third stand-alone movie. Based off the mid/end-credit scenes, the movie would consist of the revived Shazam and his family squaring off against Dr. Sivana and Mr. Mind, the villain from the first Shazam movie and the genius-worm that has visited him in multiple end-credit scenes.
With how low Shazam 2‘s numbers have been at the box office, let’s assume that a third Shazam movie is off the table – so where else could the character appear? Well, naturally he could make an appearance in Creature Commandos, the animated series that Gunn announced would directly tie into all of his other upcoming DC projects. The project is said to revolve around a group of anti-heroes similar to the Suicide Squad, except that all of the members will be of the “monster” variety. Not only that, but the members will be recruited by Amanda Waller herself.
With Gunn writing the project, and considering the mid-credit scene of Shazam 2 had Billy getting recruited by members of Wallers team (Jennifer Holland as Emilia Harcourt and Steve Agee as John Economos), it would make sense that Shazam could make an appearance in this series. However, he might not be a star or even have a cameo… he could potentially be an ‘antagonist’. The show has been said to center around creatures that will be recruited by Waller – one such creature could potentially be the villainous worm Mr. Mind. If that were the case, Shazam could possibly make an appearance in the show in order to stop the worm and the other members of Creature Commando if they end up taking a few too many liberties during their animated adventures.
Waller TV Series
Even though she’ll already be making an animated appearance in Creature Commandos, Amanda Waller is getting her own live-action series in the new DCU – and Shazam could easily make an appearance there. As stated, the mid-credit scene of Shazam 2 found members of Waller’s team recruiting Billy to the Justice Society (which he was disappointed wasn’t the Justice League). The Justice Society was introduced in last year’s Black Adam, and introduced characters such as Doctor Fate, Hawkman, Atom Smasher, and Cyclone, but said movie also performed poorly at the box office and the the future for all of said characters is still unknown.
So, with characters like Shazam and the Justice Society all under-performing (and with no clear indication about future stand-alone projects) it can be assumed that Gunn will try to incorporate them into some of his future projects that are already planned and going to happen – i.e. the Waller series. With Waller now having a direct tie to both the Justice Society and Shazam, it makes all the more sense that these characters will show up in the series. It’s also worth noting that since the characters under-performed in their own projects (and there hasn’t been any indication that Gunn will incorporate more standalone projects in his upcoming DCU slate) they could very well meet their respective ends if they were to make appearances in the Waller show.
Supergirl:Woman of Tomorrow
This is the biggest stretch and we doubt it will come to fruition, but honestly it’s the only other project among the ones that Gunn has announced that could even make a little sense. At the end of Shazam 2, Billy is revived by Wonder Woman herself (still played by Gal Gadot) and Billy fails to ask her out, despite his obvious crush on her. Wonder Woman politely but firmly shoots his advances down, and closes the book on Shazam potentially getting with his comic book crush (especially since Gal Gadot’s future in the DCU is also unknown).
So, if Shazam were to maintain a presence in Gunn’s new DCU, and if he were to stick around until the standalone Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow movie were to come out, he could potentially move on from his crush of Wonder Woman and pick a new super-powered girl to fantasize about. However, it’s highly unlikely that Shazam will make an appearance in this movie (or even last this long in Gunn’s new DCU) due to the low numbers that Shazam 2 has produced at the box office and the fact that Gunn’s new DCU will have been well underway at this point. Nevertheless, despite how unlikely it is, fans could always petition for some sort of Shazam appearance in the future if they miss the character enough. Like everyone else, we’ll just have to wait and see what the future for Shazam will be.
Originally published at https://www.joblo.com/shazam-james-gunn-dcu/