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Captain Not-So-Marvelous

Jan. 8 2009, Published 2:19 p.m. ET

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MARVELOUS Marvel’s Captain Marvel (above) caused the other Captain Marvel to change his name to Shazam In his blog screenwriter John August explains how the movie version of the venerable comic book hero Captain Marvel went from fast-track to dead.

Created in 1940 and, at one point, selling more copies than Superman and Batman, Captain Marvel is young newsboy Billy Batson who utters the magic word "Shazam" to become the all-powerful superhero. Because he is unrelated to Marvel Comics, the character has been called "Shazam" in recent comic book incarnations.

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The big budget film was scheduled to shoot this year but disagreement about its content has caused it to be grounded. Apparently, some studio execs wanted it more like the grim Dark Knight while others saw it more in the more fun-oriented Iron Man vein.

Either way, it'll take more than a magic word to bring it back to life.

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