The screenwriters for the upcoming Shazam! sequel have revealed that a returning character will be depicted as gay.

In an interview with Dorkaholics, Henry Gayden and Chris Morgan confirmed that the sexuality of Pedro Peña – the older foster brother of the title character – will be explored further in the sequel, subtitled Fury of the Gods.

“The only new addition for this movie is being a lot more forthright about Pedro being gay. And that was hinted at in the first movie very subtly,” said Gayden.

“And I thought it was really important and really, really fought for us including that and bringing that to the fore in this movie.”

Pedro is played by both Jovan Armand and D.J. Cotrona. The former plays the fan-favourite character in his regular form, while the latter star portrays Pedro in his superhero form.

Fury of the Gods sees the return of Asher Angel as Billy Batson, a teenager who transforms into an adult superhero (Zachary Levi) with a variety of superpowers.

The sequel boasts an ensemble cast, with Jack Dylan Grazer and Adam Brody as Freddy Freeman, Rachel Zegler as Anthea, Ross Butler and Ian Chen as Eugene Choi, Meagan Good and Faithe Herman as Darla Dudley, Lucy Liu as Kalypso, Djimon Hounsou as Wizard and Helen Mirren as Hespera.

The official synopsis reads: “Bestowed with the powers of the gods, Billy Batson and his fellow foster kids are still learning how to juggle teenage life with their adult superhero alter egos.

“When a vengeful trio of ancient gods arrive on Earth in search of the magic stolen from them long ago, Shazam and his allies get thrust into a battle for their superpowers, their lives, and the fate of the world.”

Shazam! Fury of the Gods is scheduled to be released on 17 March.

Watch the trailer here or below.