According to a new report Dwayne Johnson prevented a particular Black Adam tie-in from appearing in the recently released Shazam! Fury of the Gods.
For as long as Shazam has been a part of the DCEU, it seems Johnson has made his thoughts clear on the character. This was elevated even more so when Johnson's DC hero Black Adam finally got his movie off the ground causing fans to ask when the two characters (who are closely tied in DC Comics) would cross over.
While cameos and crossovers between the two may have originally been planned the Black Adam star seemingly has nixed any connection between the two, reportedly harboring a "thinly veiled disdain" for Zachary Levi's DC hero and his movies.
This resulted in Johnson straight-up "[passing] on a cameo" in Shazam! Fury of the Gods, as the wrestling star-turned-actor preferred the two characters remain "separate."
Dwayne Johnson Lays the Smackdown on Shazam 2 Cameo
Black Adam star Dwayne Johnson reportedly axed yet another cameo from his DC blockbuster in David F. Sandberg's Shazam! Fury of the Gods.
According to The Wrap, Shazam 2's mid-credits sequence sees Jennifer Holland's Emilia Harcourt and Steve Agee's John Economos recruiting Zachary Levi's titular hero to the Justice Society of America (JSA) because Johnson "nixed the use of Black Adam actors" in the sequel.
The JSA played a prominent role in Johnson's Black Adam film, with no clear indication of if and when they will show up again in the DCU going forward.
The report continued to reveal that this was not the first time the Black Adam actor had shut down a Shazam/JSA crossover.
Johnson reportedly vetoed a plan that would have seen his DC debut close with a post-credit scene in which Aldis Hodge's Hawkman - alongside a number of other costumed heroes - reach out to Shazam to join the super-powered team.
Hawkman was originally set to start in his own spin-off movie prior to James Gunn and Peter Safran's DC Studios takeover, so perhaps Johnson was intent on keeping his corner of the universe to itself.
DC Had a Dwayne Johnson Problem
It is interesting to see an actor who was so adamant that he join the DC Universe, not wanting to actually participate in the connective tissue that makes these cinematic universes work. And that means doing a lot more than simply including a Superman stinger at the end of one's movie.
He has spoken on the tonal differences between Black Adam and Shazam and wants to keep the two separate because of that, but this crossing over of genres is necessary for universe-building. These characters all exist in one shared world/universe/Multiverse and should be able to pop up in each other's movies and TV shows as the creators see fit.
But it seems Warner Bros. and the past DC regime were so focused on appeasing Dwayne Johnson that they sacrificed valuable world-building because of it.
And it was not just Shazam who Johnson seemed to have a problem with. He apparently "politely declined" a cameo in The Flash as well.
While it will not matter going forward, as Johnson's time with DC is seemingly done, the actor may have well pitched Black Adam as a proto-Elseworlds if he was not going to be ready to participate in the universe he was so enthusiastic to join.
Shazam! Fury of the Gods can be seen now in theaters worldwide.