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‘Shazam!’ Star Zachary Levi Defends New DC Chiefs James Gunn and Peter Safran: Give Them ‘Time to Make Something Special’

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - DECEMBER 15: Zachary Levi attends the Los Angeles premiere of Lionsgate's "American Underdog" at TCL Chinese Theatre on December 15, 2021 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images)
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Shazam!” star Zachary Levi has weighed in on the recent drama surrounding DC Studios and its new co-chiefs, James Gunn and Peter Safran.

Last week, Gunn and Safran — who became co-chairmen and CEOs in October — ruffled some feathers when it was revealed that Gunn is writing a new Superman film, but Henry Cavill will not return as the iconic hero. The news disappointed many longtime DC fans, causing Gunn to address the “uproarious and unkind” backlash in a Twitter thread on Monday. The decision to recast Superman has also cast doubt on several other DC characters, such as Black Adam, as Dwayne Johnson announced on Tuesday that the anti-hero will not be in Gunn and Safran’s “first chapter of storytelling.”

However, Levi came to Gunn and Safran’s defense on Thursday night during an Instagram Live, encouraging DC fans to give the new CEOs “time to make something special.”

“You have no idea the reasonings behind any of the decisions that are going on. The amount of conjecture and rumor mill and drama and nonsense that keeps getting spun around out there on Instagram and Twitter is laughable. It is unbelievably laughable,” Levi said. “So I would just say be patient, and give them some space and some time to try and really make something special. And I think something that DC deserves to have, and something that [Zack] Snyder tried to do and it just didn’t ultimately materialize, guys.”

He added that, in crafting their vision for the DC universe, Gunn and Safran are “not just making decisions because they like someone or don’t like someone. They’re making decisions based on what is best for Warner Bros., DC, that entire studio and entity and trying to make as many fans, as much of an audience, happy as they can.”

Levi continued, “If you’re out there and really like what happened before, you can do that, that’s fine. But realize that there’s a lot of people who didn’t like those things, and we should always be trying to tap into as much audience as possible, make as many people happy as possible. That’s what we’re in entertainment for, and that’s what I think Peter and James are trying to do. And it’s not an easy position, they got handed all these things that were already in a lot of conflict. So guys, just fucking give ’em a break. Take it easy. Take a breath. It’s the holidays, for god’s sake. Just go enjoy what the holidays are, give them some time to enjoy the holidays, and let’s see what happens on the other side of this.”

Levi will next star in “Shazam! Fury of the Gods,” which is set for release on March 17, 2023. During the Instagram Live, he raved about the sequel, saying “it’s even better than the first one and the first one was really fucking good.” But, even if “Shazam 2” doesn’t perform well, Levi said he fully trusts Gunn and Safran’s vision.

“Listen, I have no idea what ultimately is going to happen to me. I think I’m in a pretty good position, I think we made a great movie, I think it’s going to do well — reasonably well, I hope so,” he said. “But again, regardless of that, if they decide at some point that this is the way we gotta go — them’s the breaks, that’s how it goes.”

Watch Levi’s full video below.