We were all super excited when we heard the rumor that beloved director, Ava DuVernay was tapped to direct the Marvel movie, Black Panther. Well, sadly, that’s just not true.
While at Essence Music Festival, Ava revealed that she considered the job, but turned it down. She also revealed that she met with execs about Black Panther and their ideas were just a little different from hers, so she didn’t want to move forward with the project.
“I guess I’ll declare my independence from this rumor on 4th of July weekend and Essence weekend!” DuVernay said on her way to accept a McDonald’s 365 Award. “I’m not signing on to direct ‘Black Panther.’ I think I’ll just say we had different ideas about what the story would be. Marvel has a certain way of doing things and I think they’re fantastic and a lot of people love what they do. I loved that they reached out to me.”
Don’t be too sad, Black Panther is currently in the works, starring Chadwick Boseman (the hunk of chocolate who played Jackie Robinson in 42 and James Brown in Get On Up). Boseman will play the role of T’Challa, the ruler of the fictional nation of Wakanda and the first Black superhero to appear in a mainstream comic book franchise in the 60’s.
“I loved meeting Chadwick and writers and all the Marvel execs,” said DuVernay. “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.” She still supports the film fully.
And not to worry, the Selma director is working! She’s currently working on a love story with New Orleans’ infamous Hurricane Katrina as the backdrop. She also shot a civil rights pilot for CBS, but it hasn’t been picked up. She told Essence, “We turned it in the week of the Baltimore uprising, and we had an uprising in our piece when we filmed it,” she said. “I think they thought it was a little close to real life. But I had an absolute ball making it.”
DuVernay is such a class act. We know she’s only going to continue to soar. Black Panther is going to wish they had her on board.