'Black Adam': Marwan Kenzari in talks to join superhero film with Dwayne Johnson

The DC adventure will tell the origin story of the anti-hero and nemesis to Shazam

Dutch actor Marwan Kenzari poses on arrival for the European Gala of Aladdin in central London on May 9, 2019. (Photo by Tolga AKMEN / AFP)
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DC superhero flick Black Adam may be about to add another star to its already A-list cast.

Marwan Kenzari, the Tunisian-Dutch actor who played Jafar in the 2019 live-action remake of Aladdin, is in final negotiations to star opposite Dwayne Johnson in the anti-hero film, says The Hollywood Reporter.

The film is a prequel to 2019's Shazam!, which starred Zachary Levi as the titular superhero.

Black Adam, often viewed as the nemesis of Shazam, will be the star of the eponymous movie, with Johnson playing the title role.

The plot is expected to focus on the origin story of the character, as well as introduce the Justice Society of America with members Atom Smasher (Noah Centineo), Cyclone (Quintessa Swindell) and Hawkman (Aldis Hodge) making their big screen debuts.

Jaume Collet-Serra, who directed Johnson opposite Emily Blunt in Disney's coming film Jungle Cruise,  will also direct the new film.

Black Adam was supposed to have a December 2021 release date, but has been pushed back owing to the pandemic. Production is looking to begin in April in Atlanta, but the film remains without a release date.

In November 2019, Johnson announced he was taking on the part of Black Adam.

“This role is unlike any other I’ve ever played in my career and I’m grateful to the bone we’ll all go on this journey together,” he wrote in a lengthy Instagram post.

“Black Adam is blessed by magic with the powers equal to Superman, but the difference is he doesn’t toe the mark or walk the line. He’s a rebellious, one of a kind superhero, who’ll always do what’s right for the people – but he does it his way. Truth and justice – the Black Adam way."

Kenzari, meanwhile, has starred in films including The Mummy, Murder on the Orient Express and Instinct.

He also gave a scene-stealing performance in The Old Guard alongside Charlize Theron, which was released on Netflix in 2020.