A new Mandela effect, which is a term for when a group of people share the same false memory, seems to have sprung up around DC film Shazam.
The movie has two post-credits scenes – one shows villain Dr. Sivana (Mark Strong) in jail with Mister Mind, a talking caterpillar, while the other shows Zachary Levi's Billy Batson trying to trick Jack Dylan Grazer's Freddy Freeman into thinking Billy can talk to fish. A big section of the internet seems convinced there was a different scene, though, with this imagined one showing the Shazam family taking their seats on some stone thrones – complete with an empty chair teasing Black Adam.
Shazam's director, David F. Sandberg, took to Twitter to try and clear up the misconception: "Sounds like a Mandela effect thing. It was never in the finished movie, we cut it since the end was dragging. It was only included as a deleted scene."
Sounds like a Mandela effect thing. It was never in the finished movie, we cut it since the end was dragging. It was only included as a deleted scene.March 30, 2021
The debate continued, and Sandberg eventually tweeted: "This is so weird. People keep arguing they saw Shazam with the throne scene in it, but we cut it early on. Never finished vfx/DI and the music is taken from another scene. It's only ever been a deleted scene released as an extra. I don't think we even had it in test screenings."
This is so weird. People keep arguing they saw Shazam with the throne scene in it, but we cut it early on. Never finished vfx/DI and the music is taken from another scene. It's only ever been a deleted scene released as an extra. I don't think we even had it in test screenings. https://t.co/WbpGyOsCRc pic.twitter.com/cp669mZryGMarch 31, 2021
He then posted a poll to gauge if people think they saw the movie with or without the throne scene. The results are a little too close for comfort – 46.1% of those who answered said they did see the throne scene, while 53.9% said they didn't.
Did you see Shazam with the throne scene in it?March 31, 2021
This wouldn't be the first time a movie named Shazam has blown everyone's minds, though. New Statesman (opens in new tab) have the full, bizarre story, but essentially: plenty of people remember a film, said to be named Shazaam and to have starred comedian Sinbad as a wish-granting genie – but this film doesn't actually exist. Sinbad himself denies ever playing the role, and there's a chance that this film is in fact Kazaam, starring Shaquille O'Neal, that people are misremembering.
Have you noticed no one my age has seen this so called Sinbad Genie movie, only you people who were kids in the 90's. The young mind !September 7, 2016
At DC FanDome, the Shazam: Fury of the Gods panel even poked fun at the Sinbad/Shazaam confusion, with Sinbad appearing during the event.
Sinbad is here to talk about the Mandela effect and Shazam and our minds are blown – and Sinbad wants to be in Shazam 2? What!! #DCFanDome pic.twitter.com/8iIUjEoLwaAugust 22, 2020
Whether this is all a glitch in the Matrix, multiverse leakage, or simply a whole bunch of people remembering both Shaza(a)ms wrong, we'll never know for sure. In the meantime, though, Black Adam arrives July 29, 2022 and Shazam: Fury of the Gods lands June 2, 2023. You can check out how to watch DC movies in order to tide you over until then.