Jungle Cruise director Jaume Collet-Serra reunites with “The Rock” Dwayne Johnson for Black Adam, out this October after being bumped from a July slot, and he explained at San Diego Comic-Con why he is OK with the new release date.
Speaking with Deadline, Serra said, “We’re happy with the date. We’re a week off from Halloween with a movie that’s very edgy.”
The delay also gives them more time to finish the visual effects for reportedly over 2,000 VFX shots, which was a reason given for postponing The Flash and Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom.
Serra’s name may not be synonymous with VFX-heavy affairs — at least as much as Johnson’s — but he considers moving into that kind of work a natural progression of his career.
“Shallows had visual effects, Jungle Cruise was the next step. I learned a lot and enjoyed the process of world creation, and just being at the forefront of the technology and working with the smartest people in the world. And basically, Black Adam doubles down on that,” he says.
The filmmaker is also excited to tackle an antihero he compares to Dirty Harry, as is Johnson who called the Clint Eastwood movie and character the “North Star” for Black Adam.
“When I read the script, I gravitated toward the origin story of this unconventional character. I like how he operates in the gray, and has a particular sense of morality and justice, similar to some of the movies in the 1970s where the system is broken and someone needs to do something for justice,” Serra explained.
“Early on, I said that this could be the Dirty Harry of superheroes. Someone who won’t follow the rules, but does the right thing,” he continued. “The corrupt system won’t protect the innocent anymore. Black Adam could be that [society’s] hero.”
Of course, Black Adam does everything for Kahndaq and his family that was taken from him tragically in ancient times. “In reading the comics, Black Adam was rooted in family and what happened to him; there’s an emotional story at the core of it all,” Serra acknowledged.
As for how close it will stick to the comics or the DCEU up to this point, Serra downplays the shared universe concept and leaves doubt as to when or if Adam will clash with Superman or Shazam.
“Our movie is an original story. By the time the movie ends, he doesn’t know who Shazam or Superman is,” he said, adding that, first, Adam “has to adapt to why he is here, what the world is about,” since he just woke up from a millennia-long slumber.
That includes figuring out where he stands as “the DC anti-hero in a world full of justice do-gooders,” including Superman, Shazam, Hawkman, and Batman — although some would argue he doesn’t count.
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