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Adventures of Captain Marvel (1941)

Passed | | Action, Adventure, Fantasy | 28 March 1941 (USA)
To protect a magic talisman from being used for evil, a teenage boy named Billy Batson is given the power to become an adult superhero, Captain Marvel, with a single magic word: "Shazam!"


(original screenplay), (original screenplay) | 3 more credits »

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1 nomination. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Whitey Murphy (as William Benedict)
George Pembroke ...
Prof. Dwight Fisher [Ch. 1-6] (as Peter George Lynn)
John Bagni ...


On a scientific expedition to Siam young Billy Batson is given the ability to change himself into the super-powered Captain Marvel by the wizard Shazam, who tells him his powers will last only as long as the Golden Scorpion idol is threatened. Finding the idol, the scientists realize it could be the most powerful weapon in the world and remove the lenses that energize it, distributing them among themselves so that no one would be able to use the idol by himself. Back in the US, Billy Batson, as Captain Marvel, wages a battle against an evil, hooded figure, the Scorpion, who hopes to accumulate all five lenses, thereby gaining control of the super-powerful weapon. Written by Doug Sederberg <vornoff@sonic.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


THE MOST POWERFUL MAN IN CARTOONLAND BECOMES THE STRONGEST MAN ON THE SCREEN! All others pale in the light of this human fortress who finds no barrier too great in his amazing fight for justice. See more »


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

28 March 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Captain Marvel  »


Box Office


$145,588 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


(12 episodes)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


This was the first depiction of a comic book super hero on film. See more »


In chapter 11, "Valley of Death" one of the tribesmen uses a signal mirror to communicate with another. He flicks it up and down, but the reflection hits the other in a side-to-side motion. See more »


[first lines]
[sound of a huge gong omninously echoes down the valley]
Billy Batson: What's that, Mr. Howell?
Howell [Ch. 1]: I don't know, Billy - let's find out. What do you make of that cymbal, Malcolm?
John Malcolm: I don't know, Howell. Does it mean anything to you, Tal Chotali?
Tal Chotali: The men of the hills are gathering. The cymbal says that the white men are to be driven from the Valley of Tombs.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Scorpion as Himself See more »


Referenced in Spider-Man 3 (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

Very, very good old serial!
25 May 2003 | by See all my reviews

In my opinion, it is the finest serial ever mode. Highlighting the serial were the fabulous flying sequences. Combining a wired dummy photographed against real backgrounds in natural sunlight, with spectacular take-off leaps and landings, the final effects are still fascinating today as they were in 1941.

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