Dwayne Johnson’s Black Adam is set to face off with Sabbac in the upcoming movie – so, here’s what you need to know about the villain.
DC famously has some of the best comic book villains: the Joker, Lex Luthor, Darkseid, Riddler, Scarecrow, Poison Ivy, Penguin, and Bane – to name a few.
For all the DCEU’s issues, its antagonists have often been stellar, whether it’s General Zod in Man of Steel, Black Mask in Birds of Prey, or Steppenwolf in 2017’s Justice League… just kidding.
Ahead of the release of Black Adam, marking The Rock’s debut as the titular anti-hero, here’s your guide to the film’s villain: Sabbac.
Sabbac: Who is playing the Black Adam villain?
The Black Adam movie will bring Ishmael Gregor’s Sabbac to life, believed to be played by The Old Guard’s Marwan Kenzari.
There are three versions of Sabbac: Timothy Karnes, introduced in Captain Marvel, Jr. #4; Ishmael Gregor, introduced in Outsiders (vol. 3) #8-10; and Mr. Bryer, introduced in Justice League (vol. 2) #21. He’s one of the oldest villains in DC’s history.
Sabbac: Black Adam villain, explained
In the movie, Sabbac is expected to be the leader of an “evil, malicious group called Intergang”, according to co-star Sarah Shahi.
In the comics, Gregor is a Russian immigrant and New York mob boss who tracked down the previous Sabbac in pursuit of his powers. When he finds him in prison, he somehow triggers a ritual that not only gives Gregor the powers of Sabbac, but involves the murders of a bus full of passengers.
After opening a portal for other demons, his power attracts the Secret Society of Super-Villains, who send Deathstroke to lure him into their group. He also works with the Fearsome Five, and eventually absorbs the power of the Seven Deadly Enemies of Man.
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In terms of his powers, he shares a major similarity to Shazam: anyone holding the Sabbac mantle simply needs to say his name to activate their superhuman alter-ego.
At this point, they’ll have super-strength, invulnerability, the ability to fly and spout fire from their mouth and hands, and “indomitable will.”
It’s worth remembering that Black Adam isn’t a clear-cut hero. The movie’s likely trajectory will see the Justice Society of America tracking the character down and convincing him to help them, before taking on Sabbac together, before Black Adam gets on with his anti-hero antics… and fights Superman, of course.
The official synopsis reads: “In ancient Kahndaq, Teth Adam was bestowed the almighty powers of the gods. After using these powers for vengeance, he was imprisoned, becoming Black Adam.
“Nearly 5,000 years have passed, and Black Adam has gone from man to myth to legend. Now free, his unique form of justice, born out of rage, is challenged by modern-day heroes who form the Justice Society: Hawkman, Dr. Fate, Atom Smasher and Cyclone.”
Black Adam is due for release on October 21.