Seems like the wizard’s spell has failed for the sequel to the 2019 superhero film Shazam 2. The Zachary Levi starrer fell flat at the box office with an opening of $30.5 million. It was unable to have the same reception as the original film, and also failed to grab the same reviews as the 2019 film. While the first film had a 90% critic score, the sequel has started with a rotten status as it holds a green splat on Rotten Tomatoes.
It doesn’t bode well for sequels and Shazam’s future under James Gunn’s new DCU. And the film’s director blames superhero fans for its failure, and the reason behind his desire to distance himself from the superhero genre.
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David F. Sandberg Disappointed With Shazam 2’s Reception
The director of Shazam! films, David F. Sandberg, has shared his disappointment regarding its box office and critical response. He shared his views on Twitter, stating that he expected the sequel to get the same reviews as the first film. However, he was a little surprised to get his “lowest critic score and [his] highest audience score” on the same movie.
Shazam 2 has a 53% critic score and an 87% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. Sandberg also shared that he has been planning to leave the superhero genre for a while and wants to go back to horror films. The Lights Out director is blaming toxic superhero fans for wanting to leave behind the superhero genre.
In one of his recent tweets, the director shared that he has been “looking forward to disconnecting from the superhero discourse online.” He shared that the fans’ opinion and their views on the recent films “stresses [him] out,” and he would feel good if he didn’t come across them often.
One thing I’ve really been looking forward to is disconnecting from the superhero discourse online. A lot of that stresses me out so much and it will be nice not having to think about that anymore.
— David F. Sandberg (@ponysmasher) March 20, 2023
However, he made it clear that he does not regret working in the two Shazam films. The Annabelle: Creation director shared that he met and worked with some “amazing people” and has learned “very challenging but valuable” lessons while working on the 2019 film and its sequel.
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Does Shazam Have a Future in James Gunn’s DCU?
Considering that the 2019 film and its sequel, Shazam 2, have appeared quite separate from the events of DCEU, there is a possibility that Shazam could easily opt into the new DCU. And followed by the release of Shazam 2, some fans have also been fairly adamant that they would like to see Zachary Levi’s Shazam in James Gunn’s DCU as well.
The post-credit scenes of the sequel have also hinted the same, as the already existing DCU characters’ appearance opens the gate for Billy Batson and his wizard family to join the DCU. Many also believe that the magical superhero could also get a threequel.
However, the film seemed to fail to fulfill a major requirement for the return of Shazam in DCU or a threequel. The director of the film has said that the future of the DC superhero will also depend on the box-office performance of the sequel. And it doesn’t seem in his favor.
Shazam! Fury of the Gods is playing in theatres now.
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Source: David F. Sandberg via Twitter