Image via Warner Bros.
With Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania coming under heavy fire from both critics and crowds, Shazam! Fury of the Gods was arguably placed even under greater scrutiny to succeed to try and dispel notions that the comic book bubble was really ready to burst this time. Unfortunately, it’s failed those tests with flying colors.
Originally tracking for a high-end opening weekend of $40 million, David F. Sandberg’s superhero sequel fell well behind even the most optimistic of projections to top out at $30.5 million. Not only is that lagging miles behind the opening chapter’s $53 million, but it’s a new record low for the DCU.
Birds of Prey set the previous benchmark for a theatrical exclusive after notching $33 million back in February of 2020, but the Harley Quinn spinoff was R-rated and thus was available to a much smaller target audience. Now that Fury of the Gods has officially flopped, it’s the lowest-grossing first weekend for any DCU film that didn’t release simultaneously on HBO Max.
With a global tally of only $66 million, the chances of even coming within touching distance of a $300 million worldwide haul are already virtually non-existent, meaning James Gunn and Peter Safran’s reset can’t come quick enough. With the Shazam sequel lingering as the tail-end of a franchise that was poised to be overhauled, there wasn’t much interest among casual crowds to check out something that won’t mean much a month from now, never mind in a year or two, three, four, or five.
As a result, the DCU is looking at another major bomb, so maybe Dwayne Johnson dodged a bullet by saying no to a cameo.