A new report from Variety names Straight Outta Compton director F. Gary Gray (Set It Off, The Negotiator, The Italian Job, Law Abiding Citizen) as a candidate to direct both Marvel’s Black Panther and one of a few directors in mind for Fast and Furious 8.
Sources tell Variety that “Straight Outta Compton” helmer F. Gary Gray, “The Guest’s” Adam Wingard, “Now You See Me” director Louis Leterrier and Will Eubank are among the directors who have met or are meeting for the job [Furious 8]. Insiders add that though no frontrunner has emerged, the studio is getting closer to making a choice.
Gray is said to also be a contender to direct “Black Panther” for Marvel.
Compton became a huge hit this summer, earning the number one spot three weeks in a row. Considering it being a music bio-pic and featuring a mainly black cast, it seemed to shock a lot of box office predictors it would be as successful as it was. Something I believe Marvel is also banking-on with Black Panther, a top-tier Marvel superhero that will have his theatrical debut in Captain America: Civil War.
The trade-off of making Panther over Furious 8 is that it sort establishes the first black lead hero in the MCU, this move could help usher-in a whole new wave of diverse superhero projects, not just at Marvel. Also, allowing Gray to develop that world and the system/traditions of Wakanda explored in the comic books. This seems like the more creative commercial job out of the tube, and a bit more rewarding in the long run.
We’ve been hearing for months that Marvel is indeed looking for diverse directors to handle both Panther and Captain Marvel. I think the studio would get a lot of support if Gray was hired, and it would be a great move on their part. Gary just also happens to have been originally in the mix to direct Captain America: The Winter Soldier, but pulled out of talks to make Straight Outta Compton instead, a move that could land him an Oscar nomination.
Black Tree interviewed him a while back and had him comment on the Panther rumors.
I personally see Louis Leterrier getting the Furious 8 job because of his past experience with the Transporter 2 and The Incredible Hulk, which seem like perfect requirements to direct the next couple of films.
Do you think F. Gary Gray should make Black Panther next?