Did you know DC comics' hero Shazam was earlier known as Captain Marvel? Read on

Before you ask why there are two Captain Marvels and which comic book creator started first, let me tell you that the fictional comic book hero was not created by either Marvel or DC but Fawcett Comics. Yes, you read it right! Read on to know why Shazam was earlier known as Captain Marvel.
Did you know DC comics' hero Shazam was earlier known as Captain Marvel? Read onDid you know DC comics' hero Shazam was earlier known as Captain Marvel? Read on
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Comic book fans will know that Marvel and DC both have Captain Marvel as superheroes. But for the unversed, let me tell you that Shazam was known as Captain Marvel (which is already a famous hero in Marvel comics) but a war of copyright and trademark rights led to DC changing the name from Captain Marvel to Shazam. And the irony is their stand-alone movies of both heroes just got released in a span of few weeks.

But before you ask why there are two Captain Marvels and which comic book creator started first, let me tell you that the fictional comic book hero was not created by either Marvel or DC but Fawcett Comics. Yes, you read it right! Read on to know why Shazam was earlier known as Captain Marvel.

Shazam appears today in American publisher DC Comics. But it was first created by artist C. C. Beck and writer Bill Parker in 1939 (way before Marvel comics even existed). The same was published by Fawcett Comics. He is the alter ego of Billy Batson, a boy who turns into a superhero when he says "SHAZAM" (acronym of six "immortal elders": Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles and Mercury). His powers include strength, speed, flight and other abilities. 

The superhero was very famous in 1940's and even outsold Superman. Fawcett stopped publishing Captain Marvel-related comics in 1953 as DC Comics (back then, it was known as National Comics) slapped copyright infringement charges by saying that Captain Marvel was a copy of Superman.

 In 1972, Fawcett sold the character rights to DC, and by 1991, DC had acquired all rights to the entire family of characters. Due to trademark conflicts over other characters named "Captain Marvel" owned by Marvel Comics, DC branded and marketed the Captain Marvel as Shazam! and reintroduced in 1972. DC officially renamed the character "Shazam" when relaunching its comic book properties in 2011, and they also launched Shazam family.

So, how come Marvel comics started off comic-book superhero with the same name? So, apparently, in 1967, Marvel Comics (Timely comics) discovered that Fawcett Publications had allowed its trademark on “Captain Marvel” to lapse. So, Marvel Comics began their series and the same was created by Stan Lee and Gene Colan.

ALSO READ: Shazam Box Office Prediction: Zachary Levi starrer is expected to make THIS much when it releases

To retain their trademark, Marvel has had to publish a Captain Marvel title at least once every two years.Marvel always had the upper hand as they had a trademark of Captain Marvel and that's why DC started coming up Captain Marvel series as Shazam.

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