Shazam! lead has been cast

Zach Levi Shazam

DC's 'Shazam!' to Star Zachary Levi (Exclusive)

Now however, THR has the news that former Chuck star Zachary Levi has been cast as the lead in Shazam! While not particularly well known today outside comic book circles, he was the biggest selling character of the 1940s. It also didn't take long for Levi to express his gratitude to the fan community as well as his appreciation for DC as a whole. The word is an acronym of 6 Greek elders; Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles, and Mercury.

Shazam is now in pre-production and is expected to start shooting in February. Other actors considered for the role included John Cena, Derek Theler, Zane Holtz, Billy Magnussen, and Jake McDorman. Sandberg is best known for horror movies such as 2016's Lights Out and this year's Annabelle: Creation, which has raked in an unexpectedly huge $303 million worldwide since its premiere in August. Created by C.C. Beck and writer Bill Parker, the character was first published by Fawcett Comics.

Now that Levi has been cast as Shazam, DC Films needs to cast Billy Batson, Shazam's young alter ego.

Sandberg is directing the film with script by Henry Gayden and Darren Lemke.

Set to shoot from February until May in Toronto, Ontario, the DCEU film was thought to star Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson as longtime Shazam! foe Black Adam, until it was revealed the character would instead feature in his own solo film. However, Johnson will not be part of Shazam even though Black Adam isone of Marvel's most popular opponents. No release date has been confirmed but we'll more than likely have to wait until 2019. And given recent statements by Warner Bros. and DC executives about having some movies less connected, will Shazam! be a stand-alone DC film or connected to other movies?

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