Today, The Wrap has revealed that actor Dwayne Johnson would not allow Zachary Levi to cameo in Black Adam as his DC Comics hero Shazam (and vice-versa Black Adam in Shazam). Even though the two characters are arch-enemies in the comics. The power move was made during the DC Films/Warner Brothers leadership shift from Walter Hamada to James Gunn & Peter Safran. At that time, Johnson wanted to make a move on the entire DC Universe and make Black Adam the center of it. Members of the Justice Society were going to introduce themselves to Shazam, but instead, ARGUS agents Harcourt and Economos were used.
As we know, that didn’t work out, and his power play behind the scenes could have crippled both Black Adam and this weekend’s Shazam! Fury of the Gods having horrible returns at the box office. He also gave Henry Cavill a sense of false hope that he would return as Superman in the DC Universe moving forward. Something that was also axed once Gunn took over in the complete reboot. All of this stemmed from Dwayne Johnson’s personal brand as an actor that his characters can’t “lose” in a fight (via Wall Street Journal). Despite Black Adam always being a villain or anti-hero when put against Superman or Shazam.
Shazam! Fury of the Gods is in theaters today