Movies based in DC's comic universe have had a more complicated path to travel than Marvel's reliable blockbusters for some time now.
Even while Suicide Squad, to name just one example, has pulled in massive initial box office receipts, it's also received a slew of rotten reviews and its profits dropped 67 percent after its initial smash debut.
The Rock first announced in 2014 that he would co-star in Shazam! as the villain Black Adam. He'll also co-produce the 2019 DC flick with Dany Garcia, and in an interview with Newsweek, Garcia expressed no concerns about the beatings taken by Squad and—for that matter—Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice:
Speaking to Newsweek this week, Garcia explained that she and Johnson aren’t worried about the audience reaction to recent DC efforts because they will be heavily involved in the film on all fronts.
As well as Johnson starring in the comic book movie, he and Garcia will co-produce Shazam! through their Seven Bucks Productions company alongside New Line Cinema, a division of WB. (The project is set up at New Line, not directly at WB like the other DC movies.)
While Shazam! will definitely exist within the established DC movie universe, said Garcia, "we have incredible autonomy over this brand and franchise."
"We are working with a different team, different producers, directors…" she continued, "it's a different set-up."
As Johnson and Garcia see it, their film won't be limited by "the successes or failures and challenges of the other projects."
"That was a key component to our participation," Garcia told Newsweek, "that we be able to control the tone and the voice, and do it the way we want to."
Garcia also told the magazine that scripts for Shazam! are being drafted and their team is working hard to "get the tone right for Black Adam, which is Dwayne’s part."
That sounds great to us. If DC movies are hit or miss when it comes to critical love and audience reactions, we're pretty sure The Rock is the man who could help make a DC hit's word-of-mouth match its ticket sales.
Shazam! is scheduled to hit theaters April 5, 2019.