Every once in a while, life gives you quick opportunities I like to call treats: I had the privilege last Wednesday to spend a toasty but beautiful afternoon on the Warner Bros. Burbank lot for a sneak preview of the now-recently-released Black Adam trailer and an intimate Q&A session with some of the leading cast of the upcoming action flick.
Our host and moderator for the event played back the trailer twice in succession, giving myself and fellow attendees the chance to mull over the details and absorb all the new information packed in the video: extended scenes of Doctor Fate and the JSA in action, the inclusion of Amanda Waller (questions about her came up more than once later on), and hints at other mysterious appearances. All in all, it was a fun trailer with plenty to whet the appetite of die-hard fans and casual action movie viewers alike.
After the screening, our Black Adam cast members — Aldis Hodge, Sarah Shahi, Mo Amer, and Quintessa Swindell — took to the stage (or the foot of the stage, to be exact) and had an up-close and personal conversation with all of us about their experiences on the film.
Of particular note was the amount of praise for both Dwayne Johnson’s portrayal of the main character in his first proper big screen comic book adaptation, as well as for Pierce Brosnan’s warmth and care for the cast on-set (Sarah shared a hilarious anecdote about Pierce’s infinite patience with her two young children as they caused as much chaos as toddlers will do while visiting their home for a Summer backyard party).
Aldis and Quintessa (affectionately nicknamed “Q” by Hodge himself) took turns speaking about their unique training regimens. Hodge recalled spending up to eight hours a day preparing with the stunt team for his action scenes, while Swindell spent much of their training absorbing the movements of classically trained stage actors and dancers to implement in the physicality of their own character, Cyclone, as well as calling upon their own experiences doing live theater to cement the performance.
Mo Amer (playing an original character named Kamir, whom the rest of the crew were quick to say was the heart of the team in many ways) spoke about his and Sarah Shahi’s characters and their complicated relationship to Black Adam. As locals of Kahndaq, they both appreciate but reserve a bit of apprehension to Black Adam’s methods of exacting justice in the region — a sentiment which apparently runs through the film and is also mirrored by Hodge’s Hawkman, who relates to Adam’s struggle but disagrees with his philosophies.
All in all, I got the sense that the crew were passionate about what they were creating and — even though super cautious to avoid any spoilers — couldn’t say enough good things about their time working on it. While steering clear of the minute details, they did promise a film that “fits” within the established landscape of the current DC universe: what that looks like remains to be seen until this October, when Black Adam lands in theaters.