Warner Brothers and DC have a tendency of announcing projects before they are ready for pre-production, but currently they have an adaptation of the classic comic book series Captain Marvel lined up for an April 5th, 2019 release. For the time being, the project is referred to as SHAZAM! (from a struggle with copyright issues against lead competitor Marvel), where the superhero gained his powers from a wizard by that namesake, granting him the wisdom of Solomon, the strength of Hercules, the stamina of Atlas, the power of Zeus, the invulnerability of Achilles, and the speed of Mercury (see what they did there?). So far, the movie has supposedly cast the villain, with Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson playing the Black Adam.
This is pretty substantial casting with Johnson's box office draw and his extraordinary likeness to the character, but it makes you wonder who else they will get to appear in the film. Captain Marvel has had a number live action and animated adaptations, so it will also be interesting to see where the story will draw most of its inspiration and characters (I assume they will stick closest to the recent New 52 version of the story). Still, with no official casting announcements, here's a list of potential candidates for the lead roles.
Billy Batson - Jacob Tremblay
On the heels of the critically praised Room, Jacob Tremblay is going to get a lot of attention from the top studios. With the need of a perfect young actor to play the courageous Billy Batson, Tremblay fits the age range and talent ideally for the role. He has also expressed a deep fandom for Star Wars and superheroes, so it would seem like he would be extremely eager to take the part.
Other young actors have either outgrown the role like Asa Butterfield, or don't fit the character description as close, such as Pierce Gagnon from Looper. Warner Brothers would need to act quick as the deadline begins to get closer, and Tremblay starts to get busy, but if they were ready to cast, he would be the optimum choice.
Captain Marvel - Sam Worthington
Captain Marvel is more or less an immortal, grown-up version of Billy Batson, so the actor would have to share a likeness to his younger counterpart. Sam Worthington would seem to have a similar color tone and structure as Tremblay, and they could always improve this with makeup.
Worthington also has the superhero look, specifically for Captain Marvel, and has previously flexed his leading abilities by starring in the highest grossing film of all time. With the Avatar sequels currently in production and soon to find a release date, Worthington will be back in the public eye, which would be the perfect time for Warner Brothers to sweep him into the the blockbuster role.
Mary Bromfield - Rowan Blanchard
Mary Bromfield, better known as Mary Marvel, in a few early incarnations is Billy Batson's long lost twin sister who can share the ability of SHAZAM. Cleverly however, her powers would pull from the Greek goddesses Selena for grace, Hippolyta for strength, Artemis for skill, Zephyrus for fleetness, Aphrodite for beauty, and Minerva for wisdom. Most recently she is just another teenager apart of Billy's foster family, and the first one to try to accept Billy. Actress Rowan Blanchard is most notably from Girl Meets World, which is still trying to find its groove, but she is a standout of the cast and has a strong resemblance to Mary.
Freddy Freeman - Kyle Catlett
Freddy Freeman is Billy Batson's best friend, and another part of the New 52 foster family. He is more of a trickster, and in the recent comic run, had a walking disability, but can also share the power of SHAZAM. Originally known as Captain Marvel Junior, he took the style of Elvis which made him jokingly change his name to King SHAZAM! Kyle Catlett was a big player in the recent remake of Poltergeist, and continues to improve with each project. With a decent range of performances, Catlett seems like he would be perfect for Freddy.
Eugene Choi - Forrest Wheeler
Eugene Choi is one of the new characters from the current SHAZAM! comic and is also a part of Billy's foster family. He is a tech wiz and as he shares the power of SHAZAM, he is able to connect with machines through their electric currents. Showing his witty side, Forrest Wheeler is one of the better parts of the sitcom Fresh Off The Boat, and involved in his studies and martial arts as he claimed in a bio. So, he would be ready for action, and his presence would help add to the humor and lighthearted amusement.
Pedro Peña - Noah Lomax
Out of the newer version of the SHAZAM family, Pedro Peña is the shy one of the bunch. He is somewhat of a gentle giant, being the biggest of the bunch, and is extremely loyal. When he shares the power of SHAZAM, he is granted incredible strength. Noah Lomax has been in a few bigger budgeted films, including the new Spongebob Squarepants film Sponge Out of Water. With more of an ethnic look, and being slightly older than the other boys, he could definitely work in the role.
Darla Dudley - Quvenzhane Wallis
Rounding out Billy's new foster family, Darla Dudley is the most energetic out of the bunch. She is a fast talker which reflects the ability that she is granted while sharing the power of SHAZAM; speed! Quvenzhane Wallis had one of the best performances in the 2012 film the Beasts of Southern Wild, and is the youngest actress to ever get an Academy Award nomination. As an exuberant young actress with a bold personality, this role fits her to a tee.
The Wizard SHAZAM! - Jeff Bridges
Bringing it all together is SHAZAM himself, the wizard that grants this power to Captain Marvel, and who better to play the old wiseman than Jeff Bridges. He would bring an allure and intimidation to the power which is necessary to sell the mysticism. He is another actor has a solid box office draw, which could excel the attendance, unless they decide to get a cameo from Batman. Anyway, Bridges is the man!
Time will tell if this project will see the light of day, and it probably will have a lot to do with the success of Batman v Superman. Hopefully Captain Marvel will show up sooner in the DCEU, but at least 2019 is only three years away. I'm still excited that The Rock is Black Adam, and maybe he will make an appearance in Justice League as another immortal villain alongside Vandal Savage. There have also been a number of other possible outcomes with the casting, but come on, Jacob Tremblay as Billy Batson would be downright awesome! And as a classic pinnacle for comic book superheroes, it's time to see SHAZAM on the big screen!