Dwayne Johnson has announced that plans for a sequel to the DC superhero movie “Black Adam” have been halted and will not be moving forward in the near future. The news comes as new DC Studios heads James Gunn and Peter Safran, who was recently installed after the movie’s October release, restructure the entire DC slate. This includes the discontinuation of projects such as Henry Cavill’s “Man of Steel” sequel and Patty Jenkins’ “Wonder Woman 3”.
In a statement, Johnson wrote that he and Gunn had connected and that “Black Adam will not be in their first chapter of storytelling”. However, he added that DC and Seven Bucks Productions, Johnson’s production company, had agreed to continue exploring the best ways to utilize the character in future DC multiverse chapters. Gunn also shared a statement, expressing his excitement to work with Johnson and Seven Bucks in the future.
The role of Black Adam had been Johnson’s passion project for 15 years before the film’s release. Warner Bros. and New Line agreed to develop a standalone film about the character instead of portraying him as a villain in “Shazam!”
Johnson also promoted plans to build his own corner of the DC Universe centered on Black Adam characters, including the Justice Society of America, as well as a future “Black Adam vs. Superman” film. However, “Black Adam” underperformed at the box office, earning only $391 million globally and receiving negative reviews. Its high budget, which reportedly reached $260 million after reshoots, also contributed to its lack of profitability.
Despite the discontinuation of “Black Adam 2”, Johnson emphasized that he and Gunn have a good relationship and that he will always root for the success of DC and Marvel. He also stated that he looks forward to bringing Black Adam back in the future.
“Black Adam” Box Office Profitability and Rumors of Feud with Warner Bros.
According to a Variety story published on December 5, “Black Adam” will not be profitable in theaters. This report sparked a back and forth in the media over the movie’s financial performance, with rival publication Deadline presenting a different perspective on the matter two days later. In an unusual move, Dwayne Johnson, the star and producer of “Black Adam”, commented on the movie’s profitability through a Twitter post. This incident has led to speculation about a potential feud between Johnson and Warner Bros.
Rumors of tension between Johnson and the studio have also been fueled by reports that Johnson unfollowed the Warner Bros. Discovery and Black Adam channels, which Johnson later denied. Johnson had not publicly commented on the hiring of James Gunn and Peter Safran as heads of DC Studios, leading some to speculate about a possible rift between the two parties. However, Johnson emphasized in a statement that he and Gunn have a longstanding and positive relationship and that he will always support the success of DC and Marvel.
The History of Black Adam in Comics
Black Adam was first introduced as a villain for Captain Marvel (now known as Shazam) in 1945 in “The Marvel Family” #1, published by Fawcett Comics. In this iteration, Black Adam was originally named Teth Adam and was an Egyptian prince who, after being imbued with magical powers by the wizard Shazam, killed the pharaoh and took the throne for himself. The Wizard Shazam was unable to take away Adam’s powers, so he banished him into the cosmos.
5,000 years later, Black Adam returns to Earth and becomes the first supervillain that the Marvel family has to fight. After being defeated by Captain Marvel, he reverts to his normal form and ages 5,000 years in an instant. He is not seen again in Fawcett Comics.
As part of its Marvel franchise, DC Comics took on the mantle of “Shazam!” in the 1970s. With a brand-new origin story and a desire for revenge against the Marvel family and the Wizard Shazam, Black Adam returns in issue #28. In this issue, he resurfaces with a revised origin story and a new obsession.
In 1994, Black Adam is given another new origin story in the “Power of Shazam!” graphic novel. This version, Theo Adam, was born in 1279 in Egypt and is granted powers based on Egyptian gods. His story follows a similar path to the Fawcett Comics version, with power corrupting him and leading to a conflict with Captain Marvel and the Marvel family.
In the late 1990s, Geoff Johns and David S. Goyer took over the “JSA” comics and gave Black Adam a new personality based on strength and a strong sense of justice. In this iteration, Adam is originally the nation of Kahndaq and becomes a dictator after partnering with Atom Smasher to overthrow the previous ruler.
While this version of Black Adam is similar to Marvel’s Doctor Doom in some ways, he is seen as a somewhat fair, if harsh, ruler. This often brings him into conflict with the heroes of the DC Universe.
Under the “52” relaunch, Black Adam’s persona as a protector of Kahndaq and a militant ruler continues. He gathers a coalition of like-minded countries and starts building the Black Marvel Family, but things do not end well for him.”
Black Adam is a complex character in the DC Universe, with a history that has seen him take on various roles and motivations. In one version of his story, he is driven to seek revenge after his wife and the rest of the Black Marvel Family are killed by Apokolips. In his grief and anger, Adam goes on a rampage, killing the entire population of the neighboring nation of Bailya, which totals around 2,000,000 people. After being defeated by Captain Marvel and a group of powerful mystics, Adam is transformed into his human form and his powers are locked away by changing his magic word.
However, Black Adam has also been depicted as an anti-hero, struggling with his own sense of justice and always driven by his own agenda. He has ruled Kahndaq, fought against the most powerful heroes in the DC Universe, and even joined the Justice Society of America. Ultimately, Black Adam is a character who is capable of both love and hatred, with a sense of justice that is unwavering but also extreme.