Ava DuVernay

With Disney’s ‘A Wrinkle In Time’, Ava DuVernay became the first African American woman to direct a film with a budget of $100 million or more (it was rumored to be $103M).  Now that she’s dipped her toes into the tentpole pool, she’s taking another dip.  She has signed on to direct a movie for Warner Brothers based on the DC Comics concept ‘New Gods’.  She will also be the second woman to direct a DC Comics movie, following Patty Jenkins who helmed last year’s smash ‘Wonder Woman’.  She is also the second African American to direct a major superhero movie after Ryan Coogler who directed Marvel Studios’ current smash ‘Black Panther’, the blockbuster that actually blocked ‘A Wrinkle In Time’ from hitting #1 at the box office.  What’s kind of interesting is that while Coogler directed a movie about a black superhero with a largely black cast, and obviously Jenkins directed a film about a female hero, the ‘New Gods’ are neither particularly ethnically diverse (they’re almost all white) nor heavy on female characters.

But there is one female New God that DuVernay is a big fan of, so expect her to play a major role in the adaptation.  When asked who her favorite superhero was, she replied:



The ‘New Gods’ were created by the legendary Jack Kirby in 1970 after he left Marvel Comics for DC.  He first hinted at these powerful icons in the pages of ‘Superman’s Pal, Jimmy Olsen’ before launching them in their own books, ‘New Gods’, ‘Mister Miracle’ and ‘Forever People’.  Their mythology involved two warring worlds, New Genesis, home of the benevolent Gods, led by Highfather and Apokolips, a polluted, fiery cesspool ruled by Darkseid.  As part of a peace pact, the two leaders exchanged sons to be raised on each other’s worlds.  Highfather raised Darkseid’s son Orion, who was often forced to battle his own “dark side,” while Darkseid “raised” Highfather’s son Scott Free… and by raised, I mean tortured.

As for DuVernay’s fave, Big Barda, she was the commander of Darkseid’s elite team the Female Furies.  However, she eventually fell in love with Scott Free, who took on the name Mister Miracle and abandoned the forces of evil.

The New Gods’ conflict eventually spilled over to Earth where Darkseid sought the “Anti-Life Equation” which would destroy all free will and allow him to rule all.  His quest has brought him into conflict with the Justice League and most of Earth’s other heroes.

One New God has already appeared in a DC film– Steppenwolf, the Big Bad of ‘Justice League’, who even mentioned Darkseid and is believed to be the villain of the ‘Justice League’ sequel.

It’s interesting that at no point has a ‘New Gods’ movie been announced as being in the works.  Many other films have been mentioned only to fade away or be put on hold, but not this one.  With such a huge mythology, there’s no telling what aspects DuVernay will choose to focus on.

No release date was given.  Check back for updates as they surface!

Source: Variety