AceShowbiz - "Shazam!" is taking over the North American box office following a successful opening weekend that earned $53 million. It marks director David F. Sandberg's third critical and financial success after 2016's "Lights Out" and 2017's "Annabelle: Creation". However, that's not the only thing that Sandberg is proud of from the superhero flick.
Talking to The Hollywood Reporter, he admitted that he was satistified with the fact that the movie managed not to let any secrets out before the movie eventually hit the theaters. Among the top secrets were cameos of superhero alter egos of Billy Batson's (Asher Angel) foster family.
The movie featured two cameos by Adam Brody and D.J. Cotrona, who briefly appeared as superhero Freddy and superhero Pedro respectively. Interestingly, the two actors had history with DC Comics adaptations, though Sandberg revealed that their castings didn't have something to do with that.
"We sort of realized afterwards that both Adam Brody and D.J. Cotrona were cast in George Miller's 'Justice League: Mortal', the movie that almost happened," Sandberg shared. "Adam Brody was The Flash and D.J. was Superman. So, afterwards, we said, 'Oh, s**t! They finally get to be superheroes in a DC movie…' They didn't even know they were auditioning for superheroes."
In the interview, Sandberg went on explaining that the suit was "one of the most unexpected challenges" during the Zachary Levi-starring movie. "I didn’t realize how complicated those things actually are to make and how you have to build them several times and try several iterations before you get something that actually works. Even during shooting, we still had to keep updating it. We changed the boots because we had something that looked cool on paper, but kept falling apart on set. So, we had to create something new," he said.
He went on saying, "I had this idea of having the suit light up practically, but it kept failing in the middle of takes and things like that. So, we had to reinforce wires, and it was such a big deal just to make it work. That was something that I did not expect, but it was worth it, thanks to practical lights. I think it looks great."
Sandberg also shared that he didn't think the fact that "Shazam!" was modestly budgeted was a necessarily a bad thing. "So, it certainly feels safer and more comfortable with having a somewhat lower budget. We just would'e been more comfortable rather than anything," he said. "For example, we could've shot the carnival indoors. Talking to people on set who had worked on bigger movies, they were basically saying that if this had twice the budget, we wouldn't be out in the middle of the night in Toronto winter shooting all of the carnival stuff, because you could just build a replica of that carnival indoors."
Of the critical acclaims that his movie is receiving, the director said, "I'm sure there will be some ugly reactions either way, but it's a huge relief to see the reception we've gotten so far, both critically and from fans. I figured some superhero fans who like things darker might be turned off by the humor and lightness in this movie, but, so far, it seems like most people just love it and embrace it. It's a huge relief, and I’m very grateful for that."
Following teenager Billy who transforms into an adult superhero when he says the magic word "Shazam!" the movie is currently playing in theaters.