This article contains some spoilers for DC’s Kingdom Come. Read our in-depth Shazam! Fury of the Gods cover story in the new issue of our magazine.
Alex Ross and Mark Waid’s Kingdom Come is nothing short of a DC Comics classic. The dark alt-universe Elseworlds tale imagines an Earth where superheroes have become mad with power, as violent and dangerous as the criminals they’ve committed to stop. Ross’ gorgeous gouache-painted pages and a dynamic storyline that pits the Justice League against a new generation of ultra-violent caped crusaders means that Kingdom Come has garnered a loyal fanbase, one that constantly wonders why this hasn’t been adapted for film or TV yet. Those fans can now add another to their number as when Den of Geek speaks with Zachary Levi about Shazam: Fury of the Gods, the actor shares that Kingdom Come is his dream project for the hero he portrays, no matter what the cost to Billy Batson and Shazam.
Shazam: Fury of the Gods is coming at a time of upheaval for Warner Bros, something that Levi acknowledges when we ask about his dream projects for Shazam. “There’s definitely little ideas here and there that I brought up in the past, but I’m sure I’m gonna sit down with [DC Studios heads] James [Gunn] and Peter [Safran] soon enough and we’ll talk about what we think the trajectory of all this will be,” he says. “You know, the success of the second movie will determine a lot.”
Levi clearly trusts the new DC leadership and feels equally as positive about Shazam: Fury of the Gods. “I think we made a great movie and I think people are really gonna enjoy it,” he says. “So then it’s just a matter of just trying to figure out what we can do to keep making good material that includes Shazam that stays true to the character and does right by our fan base and all the people who have supported the comic and the character for coming up on a century. It’s a long time and I think it’s important to honor all that.”
That doesn’t mean Levi doesn’t have dreams, though. And the one he’s happy to share is about Ross and Waid’s iconic DC story. “Kingdom Come would be something so amazing to do, even if it means me sacrificing my own life,” he laughs, referencing Shazam’s ultimate fate in the pages of Kingdom Come.
If you haven’t ever checked out the 1996 comic, it’s a much darker take on the DC Universe. It begins with the death of one of DC’s most famous villains at the hands of an unusual new hero known only as Magog. The ramifications of this action change the shape of the DC Universe and put some of our favorite heroes into untenable positions. Without spoiling too much, Shazam’s role in the story is a far cry from the character in David F. Sandberg’s family friendly superhero movies.
Levi isn’t just a fan of the controversial comic, which he calls “a great story,” but he’s also aware of just how fervent its fanbase is. “I think it’s something that fans would fucking devour.”
Shazam: Fury of the Gods hits cinemas on March 17. We’ll have more from Zachary Levi, director David F. Sandberg, and other stars of the movie this week when the next issue of our magazine arrives!