Sinbad playing a genie in the 1990s Movie “Shazaam” is false. Although many people recall the comedian starring as a genie in a movie called “Shazaam,” those memories are wrong. To add confusion to this, as an April Fool’s Day joke in 2017, the College Humor web site posted “lost footage” from the non-existent Shazaam film starring Sinbad. You can watch the video below.
Where did the idea that Sinbad starred in “Shazaam”? Based on countless testimonies found on internet message boards, a genie film titled Shazaam that starred Sinbad has been falsely implanted into the memories of thousands of 1990s kids. Although this movie does not actually exist, social media users have circulated an image in an attempt to fool viewers into believing the film is real which you can see below. However, that image is fake.
Rather, the “genie” in the above-displayed image actually features the chest and arms of WWE wrestler Chavo Guerrero, with Sinbad’s face digitally added to the scene.
There is a total lack of evidence that any such film starring Sinbad was ever made. Social media users will not be able to find any footage, still shots documenting its creation, news articles or any movie reviews mentioning it. Also, there is no entry in the Internet Movie Database (IMDb), and Sinbad himself has stated that he never played a genie in a movie called Shazaam. Sinbad himself did once host a showing of the movie Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger on TNT in 1994:
@hapotter solved the sinbad genie mystery. I hosted an afternoon of sinbad movies o 1994 (sinbad the sailor movies) pic.twitter.com/yCE65Q3aK5
— Sinbad (@sinbadbad) October 3, 2016
According to Snopes, there is a simpler explanation is that some fans are misremembering the details of another movie from the 1990s that featured a popular actor playing a genie. In 1996, former NBA star Shaquille O’Neal portrayed the role of a genie in the film Kazaam.
In that film, a genie named Kazaam (O’Neal) has been sealed up for thousands of years, until one day he is accidentally freed by Max (Francis Capra), who is on the run from a local gang. Kazaam explains to the youth that he belongs to Max until he grants three wishes, but what Max really wants is to get to know his estranged father. When the genie, who considers trying his hand at a music career, forgets about his young master, Max is attacked by villainous club owner Malik (Marshall Manesh).
It appears that this Sinbad-genie phenomenon is another instance of the “Mandela Effect,” an informal term for a collective false memory. The term was coined by a woman who discovered that she and hundreds of other people believed, and remembered, that Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela had died in prison in the 1980s. Mandela actually died in 2013.
College Humor said in a statement, “Like most Americans, we had weird memories of this movie existing, but just thought we were confused. Then, one of our producers found this VHS in a box behind a shut-down Blockbuster. It’s quite damaged, and most of it has been recorded over, but what’s there is classic cinema and movie magic. We’re excited to share it with audiences at large.”
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