The Dungeons & Dragons movie may have found its director. What started as a tabletop roleplaying game in the 70s is being eyed as a major franchise, with Hasbro and Paramount teaming up to make it happen. With the movie locked in for a 2021 release date, the search for a director is on and now it looks like they have their sights sight on The LEGO Batman and Nightwing director Chris McKay. No deal has been closed yet, but the director is currently in negotiations with the studio. Michael Gilio is set to pen the script.
Hasbro and Paramount extended the scope of their partnership late last year and will be teaming to bring more of the toy company's properties to the big screen outside of the Transformers movies, which may be getting a reboot after Bumblebee is released later this year. Though, that's a little unclear at the moment. That deal includes a new G.I. Joe and Micronauts movie in 2020 and a Dungeons and Dragons movie in 2021. Getting a guy like Chris McKay on board now would give him plenty of time to develop the project and make sure it isn't rushed.
Very little is known about what direction this Dungeons and Dragons movie is heading in, except that Ansel Elgort was once eyed for one of the lead roles. And it has been described as Lord of the Rings meets Guardians of the Galaxy. Chris McKay's resume largely speaks to comedy, having directed episodes of Robot Chicken and Moral Orel before making the jump to features with The LEGO Batman Movie, which was also very comedic in tone. He also hasn't ever directed a live-action feature, but he's been working on the Nightwing movie for Warner Bros. for nearly a year. The possibility of him directing Dungeons and Dragons does raise some questions about the status of that movie, as Warner Bros. has been shifting things around quite a bit on the DC side of things following the disappointment of Justice League.
So, will Nightwing be put on ice? Or will Chris McKay direct Nightwing first and then move on to Dungeons and Dragons? It's certainly possible that he could shoot Nightwing beforehand, as there's plenty of time for Dungeons and Dragons, which isn't scheduled to arrive in theaters until July 23, 2021. Even though Warner Bros. hasn't set a release date for Nightwing, it does seem to be one of the DC projects that has actually been coming together and seems like something they actually want to make. We'll have to see how that all shakes out.
This won't be the first time that Dungeons and Dragons was brought to the world of live-action. There was the much-maligned 2000 version, which stars Jeremy Irons. Paramount and Hasbro will want to distance themselves from that version as much as possible. This new movie will also be one of the first projects produced by AllSpark pictures, which will handle the Hasbro properties and hopes to make themselves into a major player in Hollywood. The ultimate goal would be to make a cinematic universe that could truly compete with what Marvel Studios has going on. This news was first reported by Variety.