Believe it or not, there are actually two Captain Marvel movies arriving in theaters next year, although it may not be obvious to the casual observer. One is from Marvel and is actually called Captain Marvel (out March 8) while the other is from DC, going under the title of Shazam!
While talking to Entertainment Weekly, live-action Shazam! director David F. Sandberg hinted that his movie will take a Deadpool-esque, self-aware approach to the topic.
“Let’s just say we’re going to have a bit of fun with that in the movie,” he said. “But he’s basically known as Shazam, which makes sense because of the confusion.”
DC's Captain Marvel actually predates Marvel's hero of the same name by about 30 years; the character made his debut at Fawcett Comics in 1939 and was acquired by DC in the early '70s. However, Marvel trademarked the name "Captain Marvel" in 1967 with the first appearance of its own hero of the same name, forcing DC to basically rebrand its own Captain Marvel under the name of "Shazam!," which had been mercifully trademarked by them.
Sandberg has dropped many teases about the movie over the last few months, including one that confirmed a connection between Shazam! and his horror flick Lights Out. Sandberg admitted to a Watchmen Easter egg as well.
The plot focuses on a young orphan Billy Batson (Asher Angel) who, after encountering an ancient wizard (Djimon Hounsou), can transform himself into an adult superhero (played by Zachary Levi) by saying the word "SHAZAM!" Mark Strong, Jack Dylan Grazer, Grace Fulton, and Ian Chen are also a part of the film's cast.