Zachary Levi addresses claims he ‘blamed’ Dwayne Johnson for Shazam 2’s box office failure

Zachary Levi has addressed claims that he “blamed” Dwayne Johnson for Shazam 2’s box office failure.

Last week, the actor shared an article that suggested his fellow DC co-star had “kneecapped” the sequel.

On 21 March, The Wrap published a report claiming that Johnson had vetoed a post-credits scene featuring Levi’s character, which would have served as a marketing boost for Shazam! Fury of the Gods.

Levi posted a screenshot of the article on his Instagram Story, writing: “The truth will set you free.”

He was then accused of blaming Johnson for Fury of the God’s underwhelming box office takings, something he referenced head on during an Instagram Live.

“I may or may not have, you know, reposted something in my Stories about a story that I had nothing to do with that The Wrap had reported on. And then I got flack about it because people were saying ‘Oh, What are you doing? You’re trying to blame this guy because your movie’s not doing well,’” he said.

“Listen, I haven’t blamed anybody. There’s not one single person that I have blamed for anything about the way that our movie has performed.”

He explained why he shared the article, stating: “The reason I decided to share that was not because I wanna blame anybody for anything. It’s because I do not want to be blamed for things that are not on me. And as a leader, and I believe, a protector of my family, my Shazam-ly and everyone who worked so hard on these movies, we have been doing everything we can to fight for you, the fans.”

Levi claimed that the film’s production team were “thwarted” over the scrapped post-credit scene, but didn’t specifically say who by.

The actor also said the film is better than critics have given it credit for, comparing it to family movies from the 1980s including The Goonies and ET, suggesting this is why families should see opt to see it over John Wick Chapter 4.

Zachary Levi defends ‘Shazam: Fury of the Gods’ on Instagram (Instagram)
Zachary Levi defends ‘Shazam: Fury of the Gods’ on Instagram (Instagram)

Fury of the Gods took just $30.5m (£25m) on its opening weekend at the US box office, down more than $20m (£16.3m) from the first film’s domestic opening in 2019.

The DC Comics film cost $110m (£90m) to make and Warner Bros spent another $100m (£100m) in marketing, making a financial failure seem more than likely for the movie.

Levi’s co-star. Rachel Zegler, recently defended the sequel against “senselessly mean” criticisms.

In a two-star review for The Independent, Clarrise Loughrey described Fury of the Gods as “a film that isn’t without promise, but feels far too messy and corporatised to have any real affection for”.