Shazam! Fury of the Gods’ box office outlook looks abysmal as early predictions note it will make far less than the first film.
Box office tracking website Box Office Pro shared their long-range predictions for Shazam! Fury of the Gods towards the end of February predicting the film would only have an opening weekend between $43 and $52 million domestically.
The outlet went on to predict the film would only make a total domestic gross between $101 million and $136 million.
These predictions are well below the box office haul of the first film and that’s without even factoring in inflation. The original Shazam! film had an opening weekend gross of $56.8 million.
The film went on to earn $140.3 million at the domestic box office. It would tack on another $223.1 million at international box offices for a global gross of $363.5 million.
Not only were original predictions from Box Office Pro abysmal, but just a week later the outlet adjusted their predictions significantly down. While primarily focusing on John Wick: Chapter 4’s predictions, they adjusted Shazam! Fury of the God’s opening weekend haul down 17%. Their new prediction saw the film only opening between $35 and $44 million.
The domestic gross was also adjusted 17% down. They now predict the movie will only bring in $82 million and $115 million domestic.
Most recently while sharing their prediction for The Super Mario Bros. Movie, the outlet adjusted their predictions down even further. They now predict the film will only bring in between $32 and $42 million in its opening weekend and only earn between $77 and $110 million in its entire domestic run.
As for why they keep adjusting their estimates down, the outlet explained, “Sales have slowed down over the past week relative to key comparison points as overall modeling softens on the sequel’s outlook when debuting next week.”
As for why sales have slowed down the outlet doesn’t say, but it could be a multitude of reasons. First, the future of the franchise appears to be dead with James Gunn and Peter Safran being hired as the new DC Studios CEOs.
Black Adam and Dwayne Johnson’s future as the character was terminated shortly after the film flopped at the box office. Johnson made that revelation in December 2022, “James Gunn and I connected, and Black Adam will not be in their first chapter of storytelling. However, DC and Seven Bucks have agreed to continue exploring the most valuable ways Black Adam can be utilized in future DC multiverse chapters.”
To that end Shazam! Fury of the Gods actress Grace Caroline Currey, who plays Mary Marvel, revealed she’s not been contacted by DC to continue in the role in future projects.
She told The Direct, “I got excited about the slate, because I know James Gunn just brings so much to comic book lore and he’s so well-versed. So yeah, I’m not in the conversations, of course. You know, I’m along for the ride. And when they say, ‘Grace, it’s time,’ I’m there… I’m really, really curious. I’m really interested to see what comes up with this slate. And I think there’s gonna be a whole new breath too to just the world and yeah, I’m really curious.”
Gunn also claimed that The Flash would reset the the DC Universe when he made his Chapter 1: Gods and Monsters announcement. He opened the video saying, “First, we have Shazam! Fury of the Gods. Shazam has always been off kind of in his own part of the DCU so he connects very well. That moves directly into The Flash, a fantastic movie that I really love, that resets the entire DCU universe.”
As noted above, Gunn already sees Shazam in a limbo, and if indeed The Flash does reset the entire DCU, it puts the film in even more of a limbo as it is connected with the DCEU with Billy Batson and Freddy Freeman making references to Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman and Jason Momoa’s Aquaman.
One fan even expressed the confusion and chaos around the DCU as a reason why he doesn’t plan to see the film. Sandberg seemed to confirm his fears indicating that the film’s box office determines whether or not Gunn, Safran, and DC Studios continue with more films about Shazam.
Sandberg tweeted, “He definitely won’t if people don’t go see the movie. What I’ve been told is that there’s nothing in the Shazam films that contradict the future plans for DC. So the possibility for more Shazam is there and if that’s what you want your best bet is to go see the film.”
The movie also eschewed its setup from the first film sidelining Mister Mind and Doctor Sivana in favor of The Daughters of Atlas.
Director David F. Sandberg explained this decision to Gizmodo saying, “First of all, we looked at the comic books, what they were doing, but that didn’t feel like a good fit for what this movie needed to be. Then, of course, since we did set up Mister Mind at the end of the first one, we did start looking at treatments and things where it did involve Mister Mind and Sivana. [At one point] it was actually Mister Mind who enabled the sisters to come here because it was part of a bigger plan of his. But it was just too much story to tell for this movie. So we had to lose Mister Mind and Sivana for this time. So they were in there originally, but not as the main villain.”
Asked why he chose The Daughters of Atlas, Sandberg responded, “here was a lot of back and forth on what to do, because we wanted to have something in the real world but bring something cool here. And then the idea was that [Shazam’s] powers are from Greek gods and mythology and all of that.
He continued, “So it’s like, ‘Ooh, if the powers were stolen and then given to him, that gives a motivation that you can understand with the sisters.’ I mean, they do have a point here. They go about it in a bad way, but they do have a point. And I thought that was really cool to sort of mix mythology and superheroes because superheroes are kind of modern mythology in some ways.”
The film will also push identity politics with the film’s screenwriter Henry Gayden telling Dorkaholics he plans to make it clear to viewers that Pedro Peña is a homosexual.
Gayden said, “The only new addition for this movie is being a lot more forthright about Pedro being gay. And that was hinted at in the first movie very subtly.”
Gayden added, “And I thought it was really important and really, really fought for us including that and bringing that to the fore in this movie.”
Maybe the biggest reason is the film simply looks like a generic superhero CGI fest with unfunny modern pop culture references that are already dated. From the trailers, the film doesn’t appear to have any of the family charm that the first film had. Sandberg and company appeared to have traded it in for what he describes as a mini-Avengers movie.
“It’s like a mini-Avengers movie…” Sandberg told GamesRadar. “That’s how I saw it because there are so many characters. You have all these heroes, you have the villains, you have the monsters… It’s a lot of movie packed into its runtime. And it’s complicated. Just shooting and staging up to 11 characters in a scene…Where do you put everyone? It’s really hard!”
He added, “On the first one, we had a lower budget, and it was a smaller movie… It felt like, ‘We can’t really compete with the other superhero movies for action and scale, so we have to focus on character and humor – what makes it different.’ On this one, we got more resources so we could actually compete with the other superhero movies.”
Why do you think the box office estimates for Shazam! Fury of the Gods continue to decline and are looking worse than the first film?