Marvel has always been really good about signing on talented and generally undervalued directors to helm their projects, including Scott Derrickson for Doctor Strange and James Gunn for Guardians of the Galaxy. That said, the representation has often been distinctly male, relegating most of the studio’s female perspective into tight spandex or characters named Jessica Jones – let’s not forget that fan-favorite Agent Carter was prematurely canceled after only two seasons. The cancellation was justified by citing “increasingly poor viewership,” but ABC’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has dropped down to an average of less than 4 million viewers and is comfortably sitting on its fourth season with no signs of slowing down.
Which is why Captain Marvel represents something of a turning point for the MCU. Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios, is not blind to this fact and is doing everything in his power to make sure everyone else knows it too. In an interview with Variety, Feige opened up about the importance of bringing Captain Marvel – played by Oscar-winner Brie Larson – to the screen with the best cast and crew possible.
“Having a female director at the helm to tell the story of a woman who is also our most powerful hero by far is very important to us… If you had the collector cards of the Marvel characters and you could see the power levels, she would be off the charts compared to anyone that we’ve previously introduced in a film.
With Captain Marvel, who has powers that approach a level that we haven’t seen before in our films, you need to counter-balance that by finding somebody who is also very human and very relatable and can get into a groove with the audience, where they’re willing to see her fly through the sun and punch a moon away from a spacecraft. At the same time, we need her to land and have relatable flaws. Brie is a person you’re going to want to go on this journey with, just like Benedict or Robert or Chris Pratt.”
Larson is one of the most irresistibly likable actors working today. From roles in 21 Jump Street, to her award-winning turn in last year’s Room, her versatility is matched only by her charm, and having her bring Captain Marvel to life is one of the most exciting decisions the MCU has made. Additionally, we’re looking forward to seeing who lands the directing job on this one, as Feige has made it very clear that he intends to bring on a female director to accompany Larson alongside writers Meg LaFauve (Inside Out) and Nicole Perlman (Guardians of the Galaxy).
The current shortlist, which includes Seeking a Friend for the End of the World director Lorene Scafaria and Whale Rider director Niki Caro, is an exciting roundup of filmmakers that will surely bring some much-needed diversity to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Images: Marvel, Flickr via Disney/ABC