I have to confess that Shazam, or Captain Marvel, is one of my favourite superhero characters; simply because of the design of the character himself. When I talk about design here I am not just talking about appearance as we all know the drawing of a character can change dramatically over time. I am instead talking about how the character operates and interacts within the world he lives in. Billy Batson is a child who has been through sustained hardships throughout the whole of his relatively short life thus far but has still managed to retain a tremendous sense of right and wrong and willingness to stand up for those beliefs especially for those who cannot do so for themselves. He is then bestowed the characteristics of the Gods:
S – the wisdom of Solomon
H – the strength of Hercules
A – the endurance of Atlas
Z – the power of Zeus
A – the courage of Achilles
M – the speed of Mercury
His power and strength is comparable to that of Superman and the greatest of superheroes in the DC Universe, but by retaining his child self within the tremendous superhero body it brings to the character I dichotomy of innocence along with great power that gives him a unique perspective on the world. Admittedly, he does not have the greatest rogues gallery and probably is not as well known as other superheroes due to this fact even though he is one of the oldest comic book superheroes in the genre; debuting in 1939. Saying that, one of my personal fave villains is Black Adam his arch nemesis and his predecessor for the Earth’s supreme protector. Another tremendous backstory, of a slave being granted the powers of the Gods and falling foul to the deadly enemies of man that affect us all. It is a tremendous depiction of what can happen when you gain great power, even for someone who has known all their life what it is like to have none and would know best how it leads to a corrupt treatment of others. Fantastic.
In 2019 there is due to be a Warner Bros. movie that portrays Captain Marvel, named after the wizard character and magical word that controls his transformation…SHAZAM! The casting for this movie has being severely limited thus far but it has already thrown up a potential problem. It seems to be that Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson will be starring as Black Adam, quite a good casting choice; he could certainly fill out the physical characteristics and action moves the role would require. He is meant to be quite menacing in his demeanour, facial expression and voice so I would expect Johnson to do quite a lot of work in these areas as it is not something he has done before and is essential for the character.
Here is the problem though, Dwayne Johnson is a beast of a man, he is 6’5” and just an all round tank. When casting opposite him it will be necessary that Captain Marvel be close if not the same shape and size which makes it very difficult and restricts casting options. Additionally, Henry Cavill (Man of Steel) is only 6’1” tall and therefore may also be dwarfed by a super sized Captain Marvel. Admittedly, using camera angles and editing it can be made to appear that any difference is relatively minor, but having a more accurate and appropriate casting would give the directors and writers a lot more flexibility. So…who is there? My pick is Armie Hammer, he has a good height and size would come with a gym routine, but primarily he can do a serious/strong character but with a more playful/fun aspect to his character which I think would be perfect for a Captain Marvel. In addition, he has a great rapport with Henry Cavill when they acted together on ‘The Man from U.N.C.L.E’.
That’s my two cents on the matter, hope its of value to you. Thanks for the read, what do you think? Do you know/like Captain Marvel aka Shazam? Are you a fan of Dwayne Johnson as Black Adam? Who do you think should play Captain Marvel? What do you think of a Justice League with Captain Marvel in it?