Principal Photography for DC/WB’s Shazam! wrapped weeks ago, but it turns out the production was stealthy enough to hide some things from the public. Sure set footage leaked just like with any other popular production, but there is major casting that never reached outside ears. Specifically who was officially set to play the pivotal role of the Wizard. The 3,000-year-old sorcerer responsible for granting young lead Billy Batson his powers was thought to be played by Ron Cephas Jones (This is Us, Luke Cage). Thanks to a new report from Entertainment Weekly, it is now known that Jones actually passed on the role and that Djimon Hounsou was cast instead.
For those who do not recognize Hounsou from his great roles in Gladiator, Blood Diamond, and Amistad will recognize him from his numerous comic book related roles. He is probably best known for portraying Korath the Pursuer in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy. He will also reprise this same role in Marvel’s Captain Marvel next year. This puts him in the small club of actors who are featured in both new eras of Marvel and DC films. One could say that it is ironic that the two films that will put him in this club feature lead characters associated with the title “Captain Marvel”.
Hounsou was also in 2005’s Constantine and he even voiced Marvel’s Black Panther in the 2010 animated mini-series of the same name. No pictures of Hounsou as the Wizard have surfaced but with San Diego Comic-Con next week that might soon change. Shazam! is expected to have a presence next to Aquaman for the DC film presentation. It is confirmed that an Aquaman trailer will be released so Warner Bros/DC might settle for public posters and promotional stills for Shazam!.
How excited are you to see Hounsou in both an upcoming Marvel and DC project? The talented actor is a bold choice to play the ancient Wizard and will surely not disappoint. Let us know your thoughts on this casting on our social media and stay tuned for more updates on Shazam!.