When it was announced yesterday that Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck would direct upcoming the “Captain Marvel” movie, diehard Marvel fans were a bit taken aback. After months of speculation with some pretty big names thrown out there — including Kathryn Bigelow and Angelina Jolie — fans were surprised to see the studio select two directors with a considerably quieter body of work. Honestly, it’s not that surprising. Marvel has always chosen lesser-known filmmakers who bring their own perspective to the franchise, and while Boden and Fleck may not be household names (yet), a past body of work that includes “Mississippi Grind,” “Half Nelson,” and the criminally underseen baseball drama “Sugar” proves that these two are ready for the next step.
In a recent interview with Fandango, Marvel’s Kevin Feige opened up a bit about their director search and offered some insight into why he ultimately decided that Boden and Fleck were the right ones for the job:
We met with lots and lots of people as we always do, and had multiple meetings, and Anna and Ryan just had an amazing way of talking about Carol Danvers and talking about her journey. We want filmmakers that can help us focus on and elevate the character journey so it doesn’t get lost amongst the spectacle. And there’s going to be a lot of spectacle in the Captain Marvel film. We’re pretty good at that at Marvel Studios, and have an amazing team that can help with that. But when we’re filling a director chair or chairs, we want people who are focused on the emotional journey, the humor, the surprising twists and turns of a singular character journey, which is what Captain Marvel is. They had the best handle on it. And when you look at the work that Ryan and Anna have done in the past, they are all amazing and very diverse character studies and journeys, and that impressed us.
Like most filmmakers that join the Marvel family, Boden and Fleck will have to find the proper balance between their own aesthetic and the house style that has helped propel movies like “Captain America” and “Iron Man” to the heights of box-office success. It’s a big step up for the two filmmakers, but with star Brie Larson already a wonderful spokesperson for the character, they should find themselves in a great situation to succeed.