Oftentimes, studios pick lesser-known actors to play superheroes. In the case of DC's Black Adam, however, the character is set to be played by one of the biggest superstars in the world, Dwayne Johnson. The project has been in the works for more than a decade. In a teaser posted on social media, Johnson revealed the first official look at his take on Black Adam in the upcoming film.
This isn't the first time the actor has teased images of himself as Black Adam. But previous drawings were fanart that depicted a more traditional, comic-accurate look for Dwayne Johnson as Black Adam. The latest teaser features official concept art that will inform the look of the character in the movie, and in subsequent appearances in the DCEU.
The first thing to notice is that the live-action Black Adam is wearing black armor that complements his black costume, instead of the traditional leotard ensemble from the comics. The glowing lightning symbol at the center of his chest also appears to be an exact replica of the symbol that appeared on the chest of Billy Batson's alter ego Shazam in the 2019 film, confirming that Shazam! and Black Adam are both powered by the same magical source, and will inevitably meet in a film somewhere down the line.
Black Adam is also shown to be bellowing ferociously, in stark contrast to Shazam, whose childlike disposition was constantly highlighted in his movie. So while the two might share similar origins, Black Adam is clearly meant to be a more serious take on the Shazam! lore.
In the comics, Black Adam has at different points been depicted as an anti-hero or a straight-up villain, willing to go to any lengths to impose his will on the world, and rule according to his personal sense of justice.
Based on Johnson's previous comments, his take on Black Adam will start out as a villain, before becoming something of an anti-hero, a surprise borne out by the message that is attached to the latest teaser, which mentions, "The man in black is coming to crush them all." A similar sentiment was echoed by Johson last year when he first officially announced his role.
"I'm honored to join the iconic #DCUniverse and it's a true pleasure to become, BLACK ADAM. BLACK ADAM is blessed by magic with the powers equal to SUPERMAN, but the difference is he doesn't toe the mark or walk the line. He's a rebellious, one of a kind superhero, who'll always do what's right for the people - but he does it his way. Truth and justice - the BLACK ADAM way. This role is unlike any other I've ever played in my career and I'm grateful to the bone we'll all go on this journey together."
Fans are hyped by Johnson's post and are looking forward to learning more about the upcoming movie during the DC FanDome event, which launches Saturday, Aug. 22, at 10 a.m. PDT.