Zachary Levi, the star of Warner Bros.' fast-approaching DC film Shazam!, has reiterated that he does not want zealous moviegoers using his film as a vehicle for their disparaging opinions of Marvel Studios' Captain Marvel.
Following comments made by Captain Marvel star Brie Larson in regard to her desire for more diversity in the media, online trolls began misrepresenting her statements and bombarding the film with preemptive negative reviews ahead of its release. Additionally, they attempted to organize boycotts, with some deciding that, rather than Marvel's Captain Marvel, they would instead support DC's Shazam! (likely in reference to the DC character originally also being named Captain Marvel.)
In response to all of this, Levi took it upon himself to decry those who were review bombing Captain Marvel and/or attacking Larson herself online, essentially letting them know that he wants nothing to do with them. In a new interview with the Associated Press, Levi doubled down on this, as well as addressed why he felt the need to speak out in the first place.
"It came to my attention what was going on, because I was on Twitter or something and I was getting '@ed' by people who were saying what was very clearly fictitious, defaming things about Brie [Larson] and about Captain Marvel," Levi said. "And I'm not affiliated... I've known Brie over the years and I think she's delightful and talented."
"And, by the way, she doesn't need anybody sticking up for her," he continued. "It was me trying to talk to people that thought they were doing me a favor. They were like, 'We're not gonna go see [Captain Marvel], we're gonna go see Shazam!.' I was like, you can just say you wanna come see Shazam!. You don't have to go and speak ill of somebody else in order to raise me or this movie up. That's not okay. Yeah, so, I just felt like I had an opportunity to speak truth."
Despite the review bombings and supposed boycotts, Captain Marvel enjoyed an incredibly successful opening weekend, pulling in $153 million domestically and $455 million worldwide, and the film is still going strong. Meanwhile, Shazam! is also poised to enjoy a successful launch, with current projections suggesting the film will conquer the domestic box office during its own opening weekend.
Arriving April 5, director David F. Sandberg’s Shazam! stars Asher Angel as Billy Batson, Zachary Levi as Shazam, Mark Strong as Dr. Thaddeus Sivana, Djimon Hounsou as the ancient wizard Shazam, Grace Fulton as Mary Bromfield, Jack Dylan Grazer as Frederick “Freddy” Freeman, Ian Chen as Eugene Choi, Jovan Armand as Pedro Peña, Faithe Herman as Darla Dudley, Cooper Andrews as Victor Vásquez and Marta Milans as Rosa Vásquez.
Directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, Captain Marvel stars Brie Larson as Carol Danvers, Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Jude Law as Yon-Rogg, Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson, Lee Pace as Ronan the Accuser, Djimon Hounsou as Korath the Pursuer, Gemma Chan as Minn-Erva, Ben Mendelsohn as Talos, Lashana Lynch as Maria Rambeau, Algenis Perez Soto as Att-Lass, McKenna Grace as a young Carol Danvers and Annette Bening as the Supreme Intelligence. The movie is in theaters now.