The Shallows’ Jaume Collet-Serra tapped to direct Black Adam
The Hollywood Reporter has brought word that DC Comics and New Line Cinema’s upcoming Black Adam, the follow-up to this year’s critical and commercial hit Shazam!, has found its director in The Shallows and Non-Stop helmer Jaume Collet-Serra with Dwayne Johnson (Hobbs & Shaw) set to star in the titular role!
Collet-Serra made a name for himself with the 2009 horror-thriller Orphan and many of Liam Neeson’s hit action pics including Unknown, Non-Stop, Run All Night and The Commuter, as well as the Blake Lively-led shark survival thriller The Shallows. He most recently wrapped production on the upcoming Disney adaptation of its theme park ride Jungle Cruise, on which he also worked with the wrestler-turned-actor Johnson.
Johnson, who served as an executive producer on Warner Bros’ latest DC-superhero outing, has been slated to play Black Adam for some time, and though he wasn’t in Shazam!, his origin story was told by the wizard Shazam, played by Djimon Hounsou (Guardians of the Galaxy). The artist formally known as “The Rock” explained that while Black Adam was originally involved in the story of Shazam!, they decided to save his debut for a later film to let each character get some breathing room.
“The challenges were, as you guys can imagine, you’re trying to tell two very big origin stories in the world of comic books of this DC universe. Two very important characters trying to tell both their origin stories in one script. I didn’t think it was working. Finally, I called up Warner Bros., Toby Emmerich, my good buddy who runs Warner Bros., and I said, ‘Brother, we have to split these stories and make two different movies.’ He said, ‘You know what? It is a great idea and let’s do it.‘”
Johnson also explained he’d been working on developing these projects for 10 years, and there are plans to start shooting the Black Adam movie in about a year or so.
The cast of Shazam! also includes Zachary Levi (Chuck) as Shazam!, Asher Angel (Andi Mack) as Billy Batson and Mark Strong (Kingsman) in the role of Super-Villain Dr. Thaddeus Sivana. The film also stars Jack Dylan Grazer (IT) as Billy’s best friend and ultimate superhero enthusiast, Freddy, part of the foster family that includes Mary, played by Grace Fulton (Annabelle: Creation); Darla, played by Faithe Herman (This is Us); Eugene, played by Ian Chen (Fresh Off the Boat); and Pedro, played by Jovan Armand (Hawaii Five-0). Cooper Andrews (The Walking Dead) and Marta Milans (Killer Women) play foster parents Victor and Rosa Vasquez.
(Photo Credit: Backgrid Images)