His second full length directorial effort, Rocky spin-off Creed has been drawing kudos and plenty of cash from American audiences. And now he’s been approached for an even more daunting job as he’s reportedly in talks to direct Black Panther for Marvel.
If he does take the job, it would be a big step for Coogler, who to date has also made the acclaimed Fruitvale Station. But this would seem to make a lot of sense for Marvel, which has had plenty of success with directors more versed in the character and drama sensibilities of indie movies than blockbusters. The likes of Jon Favreau, Joe and Anthony Russo and even Joss Whedon (who, like Favreau had a sci-fi film under his belt) have soared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and a talent such as Coogler could well join them.
It would also be a big step for the director to enter the complex, world-building MCU, and direct the first full film for Chadwick Boseman’s Wakandan prince T’Challa, who will be introduced in Captain America: Civil War, due here on April 29. Not every director has enjoyed working within the boundaries of Marvel’s interconnected universe, but then this is a man who wrangled Sylvester Stallone’s approval to make Creed and directed him to a performance that has people talking Oscar nomination. Previously, Selma’s Ava DuVernay passed on the Panther job, but Coogler is a potentially better fit. We’ll keep our fingers crossed on this one and, if it comes to pass, will look forward to what Coogler brings to the screen.
Currently, Black Panther has a script in progress from Joe Robert Cole and a planned 2018 release date. As for Creed, the film arrives on UK screens on January 15.