Marvel May Hire Monster Director Patty Jenkins For Thor 2

By Katey Rich 2011-09-22 10:39:23discussion comments
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Marvel already made one unusual choice in building the character of Thor as a franchise, hiring Shakespearean actor Kenneth Branagh to direct the first film-- and to great success, I might add. So why not go out on a limb for the sequel? Deadline reports that the studio is seriously considering hiring Patty Jenkins, the director of Monster and the pilot of The Killing, to direct Thor 2, which is set for a July 26, 2013 release date.

The most recent Thor 2 rumor had another TV guy, Game of Thrones helmer Brian Kirk, possibly set as a director, and there's no word on how serious that rumor might have been or what might have inspired Marvel to change directions. And, of course, nothing is certain yet-- the studio could easily go with Kirk or anyone else who isn't Jenkins. But aside from how exciting it is to see the studio going with a left-field choice-- it's the exact opposite of Warner's dead-obvious pick of Zack Snyder for Superman, for example-- I simply like that they might give the job to a woman. The superhero genre has not been particularly kind to women thus far, relegating most actresses to bland supporting female roles or victimhood. Marvel Studios has actually fared a little better, bringing in Gwyneth Paltrow as a sparring partner for Robert Downey Jr. in Iron Man, allowing Kat Dennings to run away with the first Thor, and promising an expanded role for Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow in The Avengers.

Having Jenkins as a director would be no guarantee that Natalie Portman's or Dennings's female characters would get more screentime, of course-- but it's a guarantee of a different perspective, not just that of a woman but a director who doesn't come from an action background. As occasionally silly and also action-packed as the original Thor was, it seemed a little more soulful and character-based than the other superhero movies of the summer, and Jenkins's background as as a small-scale storyteller might really benefit her there. We'll wait for official confirmation before getting too excited about this, but good on you, Marvel, for even attempting to shake up the rigidly boys club world of the superheroes.
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