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Levi posted an Instagram Live video Thursday to set the record straight on ongoing discussion surrounding Warner Bros.’ evolving plan for its future slate of films based on DC Comics characters. The actor reprises his role as DC hero Shazam in Shazam! Fury of the Gods, hitting theaters March 17, 2023.
In light of Dwayne Johnson announcing earlier this week that his recent film Black Adam, in which he stars as the titular nemesis of Shazam, will not be getting a sequel anytime soon, Levi said his aim was to dispel any “random deceitful banter” circulating online. While Levi made it clear that he’s not fully sure what Gunn and Safran have in mind for Shazam, he believes he is in “a pretty good position” and encouraged fans to “be patient and give them some space and some time to try and really make something special” with the DC Universe.
“Up to this point, there have been quite a few DC films that may have made some fans very happy, but they’re not tapping into the larger audience,” Levi said. “Marvel was very successful in doing that — bringing in as many people to the table, as many people that could be satiated and brought joy and all that stuff.”
He continued, “If you’re out there, and you really liked what happened before, you can do that — that’s fine. But recognize there’s a lot of people that didn’t like those things, and we should always be trying to, I think, tap into as much audience as possible, making as many people as happy as possible. That’s what we’re in entertainment for, and I think that’s what Peter and James are really trying to do, and it’s not an easy position. They got handed all of these things that were already in a lot of conflict. So guys, just fucking give them a break. Take it easy. Take a breath.”
Levi pushed back against fan criticism of his 2019 film Shazam!, calling it a “really charming movie.” The Chuck alum added that he believes the film’s sequel is even better than the first and is likely to do “reasonably well” at the box office.
Although he didn’t name anyone specifically, Levi also said he wishes he could work with some of the people who are exiting the DC world, an apparent reference to both Johnson and Henry Cavill, who reprised his role as Superman in a Black Adam cameo. On Dec. 14, Cavill confirmed that he would not be returning after all as the Man of Steel after Gunn and Safran informed him that they would be taking the character in a new direction.
The day before Cavill’s announcement, filmmaker Patty Jenkins posted to social media about the studio not moving forward with Wonder Woman 3 after she had submitted a treatment for the film. She wrote, in part, that “there was nothing I could do to move anything forward at this time.”
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