How Dwayne Johnson Kneecapped ‘Black Adam’ and ‘Shazam 2’ While Trying to Take Over DC | Exclusive

In The Rock’s attempt to position himself at the center of the Universe, he vetoed a post-credits scene featuring Zachary Levi’s character, insiders say

The underwhelming $65 million worldwide debut of “Shazam! Fury of the Gods” is another black mark for the DC Universe, the second-string superhero stable. But there’s another villain, insiders told TheWrap: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, whose behind-the-scenes maneuvering to boost another DC property — “Black Adam,” in which he starred — may well end up tanking both franchises, they said.

To be clear, DC has a host of problems that aren’t Johnson’s fault, which is why Warner Bros. Discovery is attempting a reboot under James Gunn and Peter Safran. But in trying to shape “Black Adam” as the new center of the DC Universe — a strategy that failed to bolster “Black Adam” and undercut the once-promising “Shazam” franchise — Johnson may have kneecapped both, painting a portrait of a celebrity who put his own brand before the work.

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Scott Mendelson

Before joining The Wrap, Scott Mendelson got his industry start in 2008 with a self-piloted film blog titled "Mendelson's Memos." In 2013, he was recruited to write for where he wrote almost exclusively for nearly a decade. In that time he published copious in-depth analytical and editorialized entertainment industry articles specializing in (but not exclusively focused upon) theatrical box office. A well-known industry pundit, Mendelson has appeared on numerous podcasts and been featured as a talking head on NPR, CNN, Fox and BBC.

Umberto Gonzalez

Umberto has been covering the fanboy beat & breaking scoops for 20 years with numerous Hollywood trade, newspaper, & magazine mentions to his credit. Umberto has been profiled in such publications as The Washington Post, Variety and Grantland.