I am not a big fan of Captain Marvel. I know next to nothing about the intricacies of his long and storied history. I do, however, love the basic premise: little kid transforms into giant muscle-man to fight the forces of evil, while retaining his idealistic child-like view of things. It’s a cool idea. A Captain Marvel movie has been spinning through the rumor mill for a while (as far as I know, Dwayne Johnson’s ready to go as Black Adam [see below]). I’d like to see them keep the basic premise–ie: don’t make Billy Batson some disaffected twenty-something whiner–and make a genuinely awesome movie. (NOTE: Remember movies like Goonies and Monster Squad, Hollywood? It’s okay to put kids in danger on film…it ain’t real!)
The Plot: Twelve years ago, husband and wife archaeologists, the Batsons, are betrayed by their associate Theo Adam and murdered over a strange golden scarab. When Adam goes to retrieve the scarab, it’s gone. Flash forward to the present day. Billy Batson has been in and out of foster homes since his parents’ death twelve years prior. He meets a strange old man who claims to be a wizard and leads him into a hidden cavern he calls “The Rock of Eternity.” The old man reveals himself to be Shazam and bestows upon Billy the ability to transform into Captain Marvel. Shazam also tells Billy that he has a twin sister and they are both in danger from the man who killed their parents: Black Adam. Billy must locate his sister Mary, find the gold scarab, and stop Black Adam.
Jake Thomas as Billy Batson
There’s no reason why we can’t age Billy a little bit, make him about 15 or so. I think Thomas (the little brother from Lizzie McGuire) would make a pretty good Billy and, at 18, he can still convincing pull off 15 or 16.
Jerry O’Connell as Captain Marvel
Let’s face it, there are precious few people out there with “super-hero” physiques (it’s one of the problems with casting super hero movies). But, I think O’Connell has a mix of good-natured, boy-next-door charm and moderate buff-ness to pull off playing The Big Red Cheese. Plus, he really kicked ass when he voiced Cap in that episode of Justice League Unlimited.
Dwayne Johnson as Black Adam/Theo Adam/Teth-Adam
Look at him. ‘Nuff said.
Erick Avari as Shazam
I never quite understood why a character with clear ties to Ancient Egypt was always portrayed as a Gandalfian/Merlin-esque old white dude. Let “That Vaguely Middle Eastern and/or Egyptian Guy” from Stargate and The Mummy play Shazam. With his role as Mohinder’s dad on Heroes, Avari should have enough geek-cred these days.
Kristen Stewart as Mary (Bromfield) Batson
What can I say? I think that Stewart kid’s got spunk enough to play Billy’s long-lost twin sister. (And, if you thought it was easy finding a picture of non-Marvel Mary, think again!)
Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Mary Marvel
When Mary Batson calls upon the power of Shazam, she ages slightly less than her brother. Not only is Winstead a real cutie with legs that go on for days, but I also don’t think it’s that hard to imagine her being a somewhat older version of Kristen Stewart.
Kyle Gallner as Freddy Freeman/Captain Marvel, Jr.
If he can play Flash on Smallville, I think Gallner can handle playing Mary’s disabled best friend/potential love interest, Freddy Freeman. The wackiness will ensue when he’s the only one of the three Marvels who doesn’t age when empowered.
David Tennant as Mr. Tawky Tawny (voice)
I’m not sure how I’d manage to fit in the Marvels’ six-foot tall anthropomorphic tiger, but he should definitely be voiced by Tennant who, as the Tenth Doctor, manages to be both goofily foppish and kind of bad-ass. (Don’t believe me? Check out Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.)
Joey Pantoliano as Dr. Thaddeus Sivana
He wouldn’t be a main adversary in the first movie, but why not take the opportunity to introduce one of the Marvels’ chief villains and set him up for a sequel? And, let’s be honest, no one does weasely and evil like Joey Pants!