Warner Bros. continues to try and figure out the future of their DC Comics films, but one mandate has become very clear: “less grim ‘n gritty.” They’ve found greatest success with Wonder Woman and Aquaman, two standalone movies that emphasized the fun of the comic book experience, something that was sorely missing from their earliest attempts. And that light-hearted tone continues with Shazam!, which has just debuted a new trailer featuring Zachary Levi as the titular superhero.
Levi fits into the muscular suit of Shazam, but his civilian identity of Billy Batson is played by Asher Angel, a foster kid who gains incredible powers from an irritable wizard. What unfolds is like the costumed version of Big, with Batson figuring out what it means to be a hero while still very much in the mindset of a kid. This trailer gives us more of a look at Shazam figuring out his powers, his nemesis Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Mark Strong), while loose connections to the DCEU (Batman!!!!) are everywhere.
Here’s the synopsis: We all have a superhero inside us, it just takes a bit of magic to bring it out. In Billy Batson’s (Angel) case, by shouting out one word—SHAZAM!—this streetwise 14-year-old foster kid can turn into the adult Super Hero Shazam (Levi), courtesy of an ancient wizard. Still a kid at heart—inside a ripped, godlike body—Shazam revels in this adult version of himself by doing what any teen would do with superpowers: have fun with them! Can he fly? Does he have X-ray vision? Can he shoot lightning out of his hands? Can he skip his social studies test? Shazam sets out to test the limits of his abilities with the joyful recklessness of a child. But he’ll need to master these powers quickly in order to fight the deadly forces of evil controlled by Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Strong).
Directed by David F. Sandberg, Shazam! strikes theaters on April 5th.