Shazam! is currently filming in Toronto and new photos from the set reveal that the movie will be taking place in Philadelphia. Although it’s taking place in Philly, New Line says that the movie is firmly in the DC universe and an eagle-eyed social media user spotted a small connection to the DCEU in one of the posters on the set. There’s an ad for a boxing match and it has a sponsor of Ace Chemicals, which most DC fans know as the place where the Joker came to be.
Ace Chemicals is located in Gotham City and was first owned by Martha Wayne’s parents, then called Apex Chemicals. It was later changed to Ace and is famously known as the place where, depending on the story, the Joker was born after either falling into a vat of acid or purposely diving in like he did in Suicide Squad. It isn’t clear if this is just a clever Easter Egg or if young Billy Batson will make a trip to Gotham City or if the Joker will make an appearance.
Production on Shazam! recently started and there have been some other set photos that mainly point to normal Philadelphia. It seems unlikely that the Joker will make an appearance, especially since the movie has its own villain. Dr. Sivana, played by Mark Strong, which will keep everybody pretty busy. Strong also played Sinestro in the Green Lantern movie, which was not received very well to put it lightly. Strong has called his character an “evil bastard,” which is a direct contradiction of the rather silly synopsis that New Line released for the movie.
The official synopsis for Shazam! makes it look like the movie will be directed solely to children, which is not a bad thing at all, but not exactly what everybody had in mind. The synopsis doesn’t really tell us much, instead it poses more questions than answers. However, it does sound like a lot of fun already. The synopsis reads.
“We all have a superhero inside us, it just takes a bit of magic to bring it out. In Billy Batson’s (Angel) case, by shouting out one word-Shazam!-this streetwise 14-year-old foster kid can turn into the adult Super Hero Shazam (Levi), courtesy of an ancient wizard. Still a kid at heart-inside a ripped, godlike body-Shazam revels in this adult version of himself by doing what any teen would do with superpowers: have fun with them! Can he fly? Does he have X-ray vision? Can he shoot lightning out of his hands? Can he skip his social studies test? Shazam sets out to test the limits of his abilities with the joyful recklessness of a child. But he’ll need to master these powers quickly in order to fight the deadly forces of evil controlled by Dr. Thaddeus Sivana (Strong).”
The Ace Chemicals logo is more than likely just an Easter Egg to show that the movie takes place in the DC universe. It’s a good reference, but it seems highly unlikely that there will be any mention of the Joker or reference to Warner Bros.’ standalone Joker origin movie. Shazam! is directed by David F. Sandberg and hits theaters on April 5th, 2019. You can check out the Ace Chemicals shots below as well as some other pictures from the set thanks to the The Potbelly Gamer’s Twitter account.