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The Rock says a black actor could play Superman ‘someday.’ Here’s why it probably won’t be him.

SHARE The Rock says a black actor could play Superman ‘someday.’ Here’s why it probably won’t be him.
Dwayne Johnson as himself in "Fighting With My Family," directed by Stephen Merchant, a Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures film.

Dwayne Johnson as himself in “Fighting With My Family,” directed by Stephen Merchant, a Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures film.

Robert Viglasky, Metro Goldwyn Mayer

SALT LAKE CITY — Could we see a black Superman on the silver screen someday? Dwayne Johnson thinks so.

In an interview with Variety, Johnson congratulated Marvel for its work popularizing superhero movies. Johnson also discussed whether a black actor could play Superman, joking he’d be interested in the role.

“I think as everything builds and grows, and you take the temperament of society and what’s happening, and I think here in Hollywood — especially with franchises and characters and publicly traded companies who are sensitive to that kind of thing — so yeah, I think they’re doing a great job.” Johnson said. “And maybe one day we will see a black Superman. You’re looking at him.”

Deadline previously reported that Warner Bros. was considering replacing current Superman actor Henry Cavill with Michael B. Jordan (“Black Panther”), who is black.

Precedent does exist for an ethnic Superman, though — CBR.com notes a DC character named Kong Kenan currently brands himself as a Chinese Superman who uses “qi” to manifest his powers.

Johnson’s comments also reference a line from his upcoming action movie, “Hobbs and Shaw,” in which Idris Elba’s — previously Heimdall in the “Thor” movies — character says he’s “black Superman.”

Johnson, who is Samoan and black, definitely has the physicality to play the Man of Steel, but he’s already on the hook to play Black Adam, a rival to Zachary Levi’s Shazam. While news on a solo film starring Adam has been fairly quiet, producer Hiram Garcia told CinemaBlend he’s looking forward to director Jaume Collet-Serra’s vision for the movie.

“What we have in store with Black Adam and for the fans, I am so excited inside. Inside, I take pride as being a fanboy. I started as a fanboy before I became a producer, so I hold on to that DNA,” Garcia said. “(Jaume’s) vision for what we want to do with Black Adam is fantastic. So, that deal's almost closed. He's ready to go, and I think the fans are going to be really happy."

Collet-Serra previously worked with Johnson to direct Disney’s “Jungle Cruise.”

As for when we can expect Johnson’s Black Adam to clash with Levi’s Shazam, Comicbook.com reports that Levi said recently the meetup will likely happen in a third “Shazam!” movie.

“I can say that as far as I know, Black Adam is not going to be in the second 'Shazam!,' because the idea is that they want to go and do a standalone Black Adam movie first,” Levi said. “If we do a third 'Shazam!' and a second 'Black Adam,' kind of (parallel) like that, that’s where we would (meet).”

Levi also said he sees the two magicians’ battle as a culmination of both characters’ arcs, but worries it would be difficult to top if the characters met in the second “Shazam!”

"(Shazam and) Black Adam, they’re doppelgängers right, (he’s) the evil twin to who I am. So that’s got to be like the final battle,” Levi said. “If we do that in the second movie, then where do we go after that? It would just be a movie of us sitting around playing video games for the third one, that would be very boring.”