Marvel’s Wonder Man Series Already In Trouble?

Rumors suggest that Marvel's upcoming Wonder Man series may already be in trouble as the show has shuffled directors.

By Mark McKee | Published

wonder man marvel
Wonder Man

Now that we are finished with the divisive Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, fans are looking forward to something a little more linear with a solid direction. One of the more anticipated, albeit unknown, projects is the Disney+ series following the character Wonder Man, starring Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as the titular hero. According to Discussing Film, one thing we know about the series now is that the film could be seeing its first signs of trouble with the addition of a new director in James Ponsoldt. 

There are dozens of reasons why directors will move on from or split directing duties; everything from creative differences to scheduling conflicts can cause a departure. In the case of Wonder Man, James Ponsoldt has been brought on to direct an unknown number of episodes, taking some of the duties away from Marvel directing alum Destin Daniel Cretton. While the series hasn’t been formally announced by Marvel as a part of Phase Five, or even Six, of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, there is information indicating that the series will begin production this year. 

As of now, the only information we have about Wonder Man outside of the dual directors is the pair of actors set to appear in the series. Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is set to appear as the titular hero, and Sir Ben Kingsley is set to return as his character from Iron Man 3 and Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Trevor Slattery. They are fitting co-stars since they are both actors outside their MCU adventures. 

wonder man
Yahya Abdul-Mateen II

Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is no stranger to franchises or comic book adaptation appearances, as he has made a name for himself in both. He became a household name when he starred opposite Jason Mamoa in the first solo outing of Aquaman in his self-titled debut film. He then appeared as a younger version of Laurence Fishburn’s hero from the real world when he portrayed Morpheus in The Matrix: Resurrections

James Ponsoldt comes to Wonder Man as a highly regarded director. His debut project, The Spectacular Now, starred Miles Teller and Shailene Woodley (both parts of failed Marvel franchises themselves in Fantastic Four and The Amazing Spiderman, respectively) and put him on the map. His most recent project, The Circle starring Emma Watson and Tom Hanks, had all the star power to be a hit but fell at the box office and with the critics. 

Cretton is likely being forced to share directing duties simply out of practicality with a schedule with Disney that is filling up quickly. While the Shang Chi director has some Marvel projects coming up in another outing for Simu Liu and the enviable duty of bringing the new Avengers together in Avengers: The Kang Dynasty, he also has another project for Disney+. He is helming American Born Chinese, a live-action adaptation that brings together Everything, Everywhere, All at Once stars Michelle Yeoh, Ke Huy Quan, and Stephanie Hsu. 

With all of that on his plate, it seems prudent to bring in help to ensure Wonder Man gets the attention it deserves.