The highly-anticipated sequel Creed 2 has finally, officially locked down a director and it's a name that nobody would have expected. A couple of months ago, Sylvester Stallone indicated that he was going to step up and direct the Creed sequel himself, but that didn't pan out. Now, it's been announced that up-and-coming director Steven Caple Jr. is going to take the reins on Creed 2, which will serve as his first directorial effort for a major studio. No pressure.
Reportedly, Creed star Michael B. Jordan and Sylvester Stallone hand-picked Steven Caple Jr. for the gig, after a very long search. Stallone was considering taking the gig, but after talking it over with the rest of the creative team, they decided to find someone else to direct the movie. Jonathan Glickman, MGM's president, motion picture group, had this to say about the news in a statement.
"We could not be more fortunate and excited for the collaboration of Steven, Sly, Michael and the producers, to build upon the success of Creed. The combination of Steven's talent and unique vision makes him the perfect director to continue the Rocky franchise storied lineage."
This new report also confirms that Tessa Thompson is going to return for the sequel. The script for Creed 2 was written by Sylvester Stallone, with Luke Cage showrunner Cheo Hodari Coker co-writing. His involvement had not been revealed until now. Michael B. Jordan, who reprises his role as Adonis Creed in the sequel, took to Twitter to welcome the new director, saying, "Excited for Coogler to hand over the reins to Steven Caple, Jr., our director for Creed 2! Can't wait to bring you guys the next chapter of our story ... coming at you November 2018." Steven Caple Jr. Had this to say about his new job.
"It's an honor to be a part of such an iconic franchise and to work with such great collaborators. Mike, Sly, and Tessa are extraordinarily talented and bring something special to today's culture. I look forward to joining the family and continuing the precedent set by this franchise's alumni of incredible filmmakers."
Ryan Coogler, who directed the first Creed, is still currently busy completing post-production on Marvel's Black Panther. However, it's expected that he will sign on as an executive producer for Creed 2, though no deal has been inked just yet. Sylvester Stallone, who reprises his role as Rocky Balboa once again in the sequel, had this to say in a statement about Steven Caple Jr.
"The character of Adonis Creed reflects this generation and its challenges. I believe it's important for the director to also be a part of this generation like I was in mine, to make the story as relatable as possible. We are extremely lucky to have the talented young filmmaker Steven Caple Jr. step up and accept the role of director. I am confident that he and Michael B. Jordan will hit it out of the park!"
Steven Caple Jr.'s only feature is IFC's The Land, but that was reportedly enough to win over the studio. Creed 2 will feature Dolph Lundgren reprising his role as Ivan Drago from Rocky IV. According to Variety, production starts in March of 2018. The movie is currently slated for release on November 21, 2018, which means they're going to have to turn it around rather quickly, assuming they stick to that date.