Marvel appears to have narrowed down its search for the director for ‘Black Widow’ to three candidates– Cate Shortland, Amma Asante, and Maggie Betts. In late April, a list of prospective directors was leaked and Asante and Betts were among them. Marvel reportedly met with 65 potential directors, so it’s possible that Shortland was among them, but her name wasn’t mentioned in that initial report.
Betts has only directed one feature film, ‘Novitiate’ but that one film won the Special Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, so Marvel may see the promise that she has and deem this project perfect for her to make her big break.
Asante is best known for her period dramas ‘Belle’ and ‘A United Kingdom’. Her latest film, ‘Where Hands Touch’ is currently in post-production and includes Abbie Cornish and Christopher Eccleston in the cast. She is currently developing the real life espionage thriller ‘The Billion Dollar Spy’, which might be the perfect setup should she be selected to helm this Marvel movie about a former Soviet spy-turned-superhero.
However, rumor has it that Shortland is at the top of the list. An Australian, Shortland directed the drama ‘Somersault’ which also happens to have starred Abbie Cornish. She has also directed the films ‘Lore’, a World War II romance drama, and suspense thriller ‘Berlin Syndrome’. Prior to that, she worked in television on the Australian shows ‘Bad Cop, Bad Cop’ and ‘The Secret Life of Us’.
Jac Schaeffer has been selected to pen the script. Her previous credits include the film ‘TiMER’ and the Disney short ‘Olaf’s Frozen Adventure’.
At any rate, it appears that Marvel definitely wants a woman to direct this film, just as Warner Brothers hired Patty Jenkins to helm ‘Wonder Woman’. Currently, Anna Boden is co-directing ‘Captain Marvel’ with Ryan Fleck. ‘Captain Marvel’ will be Marvel’s first female-fronted film and is due in theaters next year.
Marvel’s plans beyond ‘Avengers 4’ are hazy to put it mildly. But it would still be cool if the first live action female hero of the Marvel Universe were to finally get her own solo adventure.