With ‘Deadpool & Wolverine’ Set To Save Summer, Shawn Levy Tops List To Direct Marvel’s Next ‘Avengers’ Movie? – The Dish

EXCLUSIVE: As Deadpool & Wolverine tracks huge ahead of its July 26 release and looms as a summer box office savior, we can reveal that director Shawn Levy is the top choice and is having early conversations to direct another Marvel Studios pic — the next Avengers movie.

Deadline hears that Levy has been given the latest script by Michael Waldron, though sources add that he has not given an answer on whether he will take the job, and the studio is still planning to meet with other directors while they wait on a decision from him.

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Marvel Studios could not be reached for comment.

We can’t say for sure that Levy will take the job; he expects to be heavily involved as a director and executive producer of the final season of Netflix’s signature series Stranger Things, and there is also a Star Wars film in his future. Still, the prospect of Levy steering the next Avengers makes a helluva lot of sense as Marvel boss Kevin Feige continues to sort out the next iteration of his superhero empire.

There have been four Avengers blockbusters, two directed by Joss Whedon (the $1.5 billion-grossing The Avengers in 2012 and $1.4 billion for the first sequel The Avengers: Age of Ultron) and two by Joe and Anthony Russo (the $2.05 billion-grossing Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame). Endgame‘s $2.8 billion global cume made it the highest-grossing film of all time upon its release in 2019 until rereleases pushed James Cameron’s original Avatar to $2.9 billion.

Even with no director set and the script only recently coming in, Marvel has been working hard in recent months to pull this together so shooting can begin next year on one of Marvel’s largest productions to date. Sources close to both the project say more than 60 MCU characters could reprise their roles, including everyone from Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth and Benedict Cumberbatch to Tom Hiddleston, Simu Liu and Karen Gillian. Unlike the first four films in which there was a core group that consisted of Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Hemsworth and Ruffalo, many of the characters in this film would have equal footing, making it more of an ensemble feature instead of a handful of characters leading the team.

Plot details are unknown, and following Jonathan Majors’ exit from the MCU as Kang following his reckless assault conviction in December, it is unknown who the central villain would be, or if the film could potentially include multiple antagonists.

The Avengers project is another huge swing for Marvel given the projects it will impact going forward. But in Levy they would have a director with an enviable track record of hits, many on a tentpole level, which the MCU demands. Levy’s credits as director range from the Night at the Museum films to The Pink Panther, Big Fat Liar, Date Night, Real Steel, Free Guy, The Adam Project and the Steven Knight-created series All The Light We Cannot See.

As producer at 21 Laps, Levy’s results are even more extensive, including Stranger Things.

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