Ava DuVernay Passes on Marvel’s Black Panther Movie

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Word broke a couple of months ago that Ava DuVernay, who directed last year’s Selma, was in talks to direct Marvel’s planned Black Panther picture.

A female director, not to mention a director of colour, would have been quite the get for Marvel. Still, regardless of the gender and race politics that Marvel – and many other studios – are dealing with when it comes to the P.R. game, DuVernay proved her worth as director with a fantastic biopic. She would have been an interesting addition to the MCU.

“I’m not signing on to direct Black Panther,” DuVernay said in an interview with Essence. “I think I’ll just say we had different ideas about what the story would be.”

DuVernay said that, while she thinks Marvel is fantastic and loves the fact they reached out to her, there were conflicting approaches when looking at how to bring the character to life.

“In the end, it comes down to story and perspective. And we just didn’t see eye to eye. Better for me to realize that now than cite creative differences later.”

The control that Marvel wields over films is becoming better known. Edgar Wright’s high-profile split from Ant-Man and Alan Taylor’s comments last week about how the studios changed Thor: The Dark World in post-production are painting a clear yet unsurprising picture. The films populating the MCU, even if the quality hasn’t always been in the vicinity of perfection, all feel as though they are indeed connected, in both tone and plot structure; Marvel’s control is arguably to thank.

Black Panther will see Chadwick Boseman (42, Get on Up) play T’Challa, prince of the fictional African nation Wakanda. He must rise to take the mantle of the Black Panther after his father, the king, is treacherously killed. As of now, Black Panther is aiming for U.S. release on July 6, 2018.

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