Dwayne Johnson explains how Black Adam handles its tricky tonal balance between appealing to different audiences’ desires and expectations of what a DCEU movie could be. The film will see Johnson finally take on the role of the DC Comics anti-hero in a feature-length movie. Black Adam is set to release on October 21 and is projected to outperform Shazam!’s box office, likely due to Johnson’s box office appeal.
Taking place within the current landscape of the DCEU, Black Adam sees Johnson’s Teth-Adam awakened in modern times following 5,000 years of imprisonment. Upon awakening, Black Adam’s raw, unprecedented power and rage catch the eyes of Earth’s heroes and those who keep a watchful eye on the many metahumans spread across the globe. As dark forces greater than anything the world has faced rise up, Black Adam is forced to not only find his place in the world but take a stand against those who threaten it. With new heroes including Aldis Hodge’s Hawkman and Pierce Brosnan’s Doctor Fate set to make their DCEU debut alongside Black Adam, the upcoming DCEU movie promises to bring big changes to the franchise. But, with the film set to introduce a number of new characters while also having to contend with high expectations from both the studio and audience, Johnson has opened up about the pressures facing Black Adam.
In an interview with CBR, Johnson was asked about how important was that Black Adam managed to strike a tonal balance between light-hearted moments and heavier themes. The actor revealed that while he wanted to create a film that’s distinct by its own merits, he also wanted to fulfill as many audiences’ desires as possible, whether viewers were looking for faithful adaptations of the comic books or for a deeper story. Check out Johnson’s full response below:
That’s a great question because you have an opportunity now to introduce a new IP to the world and then a new group IP in the JSA. It was also important [that] if we’re going to make a movie, I think that it’s got to be disruptive. That’s going to be cool. That’s going to be provoking in your thoughts.
We want to take care of the action enthusiast. We want to take care of the comic book enthusiast. We want to take care of the superhero genre enthusiast, the super-fans, but also, if you want to go a little deeper philosophically with how things are around the world currently, then there’s a bit of that in Black Adam for you, too.
How Black Adam Will Be Different From Other DCEU Movies
With Black Adam‘s marketing highlighting DC’s changing hierarchy in the wake of the anti-hero’s emergence, it is clear that the film will mark a turning point in the direction of the DCEU and stand apart from what came before. While films including 2016’s Suicide Squad and 2021’s The Suicide Squad have shown that the franchise isn’t afraid to follow characters with shadier pasts and villainous natures, Black Adam is set to approach the topic of morality from a different angle. With Teth-Adam being new to the modern world and possessing impressive powers, the character has yet to establish his place as a hero or villain, meaning that he isn’t searching for a form of redemption like Task Force X’s members. As such, Black Adam‘s story will instead question how the character can use his powers while fitting into a new age of modern legends.
With Johnson hoping Black Adam will face Superman in the future of the DCEU and recent matters involving the Warner Bros. Discovery merger overshadowing the studios’ decisions, both audiences and those in the industry are invested in seeing how the upcoming film will be received. However, from the actor’s recent comments, it is clear that the film has been developed to reach the widest range of demographics while also carrying on the story of the series. With Black Adam‘s release date drawing closer, Johnson’s comments help set up audiences with what they can expect from the highly anticipated film.
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