When Shazam! released earlier this year, a lot of people were impressed. Critics were impressed enough that the movie pulled a 91% on Rotten Tomatoes. Fans were impressed enough that the movie made $364 million worldwide on a $100 million budget. And Warner execs were impressed enough that they’re fast-tracking the sequel.
Speaking at the European comic convention CCXP, star Zachary Levi gave the lowdown.
“The truth is, I don’t really know anything,” he said. “All I really know is that New Line, our studio, and Warner Brothers, our parent studio, and DC, and our producers and executives and everybody who’s involved in all of the decision making, they’re very happy with what we did. They want to do even better the second time around, and they are crafting a story right now as we speak about what that sequel is going to be.”
And there’s a good reason for that: “I know they want to make it as soon as possible because those kids are growing up like weeds, so if we don’t do that in like the next two days, they’re gonna be full-grown adults.” Warner Bros knows a little something about making a movie series on the backs of quickly-growing kids thanks to the massive success of the Harry Potter franchise, and it’s hard not to think of the cast of Stranger Things when this comes up, too. When kids are your stars, making a movie series means you move fast.
Levi shared a story with ComicBook.com about how that impacted just the first movie. Principal photography took place over the course of four months, and a six-month break allowed for things like editing and VFX. But you never get everything in one take, so six months later they were back to fill in the blanks.
“We came back to do additional photography… Jack [Glazer] and Asher [Angel] quite literally grew so much that we couldn’t match their faces with what they looked like six months prior. So if we don’t shoot another movie real quick they’re just gonna be men.”
Levi hasn’t been shy about his love for the character, and that went a long way toward making a concept that shouldn’t work into a true success. Shazam! is the ultimate self-insert character: what if you, dear [10-year-old] reader, could say a magic word and turn into a hero who wears red and flies like some kind of “super” man? And yet, the movie we got was funny and full of heart (Check out our review!). We can’t wait to see what director David F. Sandberg does with the sequel, though we can start to guess based on that post-credits sequence.
Shazam! hits disc today, July 16. The sequel doesn’t yet have a date.
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