'Black Adam' ending: Why Pierce Brosnan got 'quite emotional' about Dr. Fate's destiny (spoilers) (2023)

Spoiler warning: This post discusses the ending of "Black Adam" (in theaters now). Stop reading now if you haven't seen it yet and don't want to know.

For years,Pierce Brosnan has watched the Golden Age of comic book movies from the sidelines and yearned to get into the game.

That moment came for the James Bond starwith "Black Adam.”Brosnan, 69, is perfectly cast as Kent Nelson, whose magical gold Helmet of Nabu transforms him intoDr. Fate –a character Brosnan proudly boasts is“the most powerful sorcerer in the pantheon of superheroes." (Sorry, Benedict Cumberbatch).

Brosnan dived into the Dr. Fate role, deciding to wear hisreal wedding ring onscreen for the first time to play the married character ("It just seemed fitting"). He brought his own charm, witty banter and resplendent facial hair to the key Justice Society member, alongsideHawkman (Aldis Hodge). Heearned the respect of renegade antihero Black Adam (Dwayne Johnson).

Critics and fans applauded Brosnan's superheroic entry. But was there a happy ending?

** This is your final warning. Spoilers below! **

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'Black Adam' ending: Why Pierce Brosnan got 'quite emotional' about Dr. Fate's destiny (spoilers) (1)

Welp, it was all great until Dr. Fate died in valiant battle at the end of "Black Adam." It was anoble demise at the hands of supervillain Sabbac that spared the Justice Society."I forsake my life for the life of my colleagues," Brosnan says.

True, but still aseemingly shocking superhero one-and-done.

Brosnan even ribbed his friend,producer Beau Flynn, about Dr. Fate's destiny while filming in Atlanta.

"I told him thank you for the opportunity, but then you kill my character off," Brosnan says."Just as I begin my odyssey in the world of DC Comics, he dies."

Shooting the final scenes, Brosnan was in full altruistic mode. With Black Adam imprisoned undersea by the Justice Society for his misdeeds, Dr. Fate battled Sabbac alone. He placed a force field around Hawkman, Cyclone (Quintessa Swindell) and Atom Smasher (Noah Centineo) and gave a speech about his decision – adding hisrelief of being relieved of his superhero all-seeing burden."For the first time I see nothing, and it's beautiful," Dr. Fate says.

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Brosnan, who has seen tragic death in his own life, says he got "quite emotional" speaking his character's final words.

"It resonated with me as a man who has lived 69 years and is on the cusp of his 70th year on the planet,and having seen friends pass before me, while being close to the passing of lives," Brosnan says. "There was a deep poignancy."

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'Black Adam' ending: Why Pierce Brosnan got 'quite emotional' about Dr. Fate's destiny (spoilers) (2)

How did Dr. Fate lose his 'Black Adam' battle?

Dr. Fate might be all-powerful, but he had a lot going on in his mano-a-mano battle with Sabbac. His powers were drained keeping the force field and Justice Society out of the fray, despite theirefforts to bust out. Dr. Fate also sent mind messages rousing Black Adam to bust out of prison and help.

"He's doing all of those things at once and thatweakens him, his powers are split up," says director Jaume Collet-Serra.

But the capper is the future-seeing Dr. Fate changingthe future to his own detriment.He had foreseen Hawkman dying in battle, but ultimately he altered that destiny andtook the blow.

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"Dr. Fate turned that into a future where he died instead,sacrificed himself so Hawkman could live," Collet-Serra says. "He potentially could have beaten Sabbac. But in that present prophecy, that would have meant thatsomehow Hawkman would have died. That's what he's trying to prevent."

With Dr. Fate's all-powerful helmet removed, Brosnan gives a look of resignation before Sabbac gives a final death blow. His job is done, Hawkman lives, and the superhero weight is lifted.

"There isa moment of acceptance thathistime has come," Collet-Serra says. "That last look is accepting his fate, which is a beautiful thing from Dr. Fate."

Black Adam then breaks out and rips Sabbac up, fatefully late to the scene.

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'Black Adam' ending: Why Pierce Brosnan got 'quite emotional' about Dr. Fate's destiny (spoilers) (3)

Is it over for Pierce Brosnan, Kent Nelson andDr. Fate?

The magic gold helmet which bestows Dr. Fate's powers lives on even as Kent Nelson died. Hawkman uses these powers in battle. "The helmet chooses who it lets touch. Andat the end of the movie, the helmet choosesHawkman," Collet-Serra says.

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This points to a possible new Dr. Fate, should there be future Justice Society installments.

And don't count Brosnan out, either. The wise Kent Nelson is "a bit like Obi-Wan Kenobi who dies in the first 'Star Wars' and yet appears in every 'Star Wars,' " Collet-Serra says. "So we'll all see what happens."

Brosnan says even Flynn suggested in their talk that "not everything is as it seems."

"So I think the door is open," Brosnan says of a possible return."I honestly have no idea where this will go. I just know I'm very proud of the work playing Dr. Fate and honored being part of the DC comic book world."

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What happened to Dr. Fate at the end of Black Adam? ›

Smashed through the torso by Sabbac, Dr. Fate falls over dead and seemingly dissipates into thin air, dropping the magic-granting helmet, which he had removed immediately prior to his mortal wounding.

Will Dr. Fate return after Black Adam? ›

Johnson And Brosnan have been vocal in stating that Black Adam is not the last time viewers will see Dr. Fate. Kent Nelson has been the primary iteration of the classic character in his comic run.

Will Pierce Brosnan be Dr. Fate again? ›

Legendary actor Pierce Brosnan has revealed that his Black Adam character, Doctor Fate, may return to for a future DC Universe film. The following contains spoilers for Black Adam, now playing in theaters. Pierce Brosnan revealed that his character Doctor Fate in Black Adam may return for future films.

Is Black Adam more powerful than Dr. Fate? ›

Even though Dr. Fate might be considered to be lacking in some physical aspects, his powers are far more versatile than Black Adam's. He is also more durable and more intelligent. Doctor Fate's powers are on a multiversal level, and he faced opponents far more powerful than Black Adam and lived to tell the tale.

Why did Dr. Fate sacrificed himself in Black Adam? ›

Fate turned that into a future where he died instead, sacrificed himself so Hawkman could live. He potentially could have beaten Sabbac. But in that present prophecy, that would have meant that somehow Hawkman would have died. That's what he's trying to prevent.”

Why is Dr. Fate's helmet cracked in Black Adam? ›

During the finale of Black Adam, the superhero Doctor Fate dies and leaves behind his helmet, which evaporates into particles and disappears.


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