The Superman reboot is in the process of taking shape behind the scenes. We know that Henry Cavill is out in the lead role and that the studio is committed to casting a person of color in the part (preferably, Michael B. Jordan). We also know that Ta-Nehesi Coates is penning the script and that JJ Abrams is going to be one of the head producers on the project. However, a director has not been announced yet. And we have learned some information about why that has yet to be decided.
According to our trusted inside source – the same one that provided Giant Freakin Robot with confirmed exclusive scoops regarding Chloe Bennet returning as Quake for a new Marvel series and Don Cheadle appearing as War Machine in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier – the Superman reboot has not named a director yet because Warner Bros./DC wants JJ Abrams to direct but there is some discussion about giving the job to a Black director instead. With this version deciding to make the Man of Steel a person of color, there is the thought that a Black director will provide a better perspective on the film as well as be good optics for the production.
It makes sense that Warner Bros./DC would want JJ Abrams to be the director of the Superman reboot. With his name attached to some of the biggest franchises of all time – Star Wars, Star Trek, and Mission: Impossible – he has a lot of clout and is a filmmaking figure that even a lot of mainstream audiences might recognize. However, with the Superman reboot set to star a person of color, it might be tough for some viewers to reconcile that with a white director at the helm. With representation becoming such a big facet with these massive intellectual properties, it is important for that representation to be felt both in front of and behind the camera.
Still, it looks like that decision has not been finalized over at Warner Bros. DC. So the Superman reboot could end up with Abrams in the saddle. Honestly, we hope he only stays in his producer role. We know that he is a big Superman fan and even came close to directing a Superman movie years ago. He has always loved the character and this could be a passion project for him. But, his directorial efforts have not exactly been uniformly well-received. Just look at the responses to The Rise of Skywalker and Star Trek Into Darkness. It might be better for the movie if he wasn’t given too much authority over its creative direction.
Plus, it would be really invigorating to see a stylish Black director get a shot at delivering a fresh and inventive approach to directing the Superman reboot. There are plenty of young and established directors that could do something new with this iteration. J.D. Dillard, Shaka King, Ryan Coogler, Boots Riley, or another great Black filmmaker could really give us an approach to the Last Son of Krypton that will surprise and entertain us all. We will look forward to seeing who Warner Bros./DC decides to let helm this very important film.