So Captain America 2 finally has a director and it’s not Joe Johnston, who did a masterful job. It’s Joe and Anthony Russo. Directors of many episodes of Arrested Developed, Executive Producers of Happy Endings and Community (two of the funniest shows on tv), and Directors of You, Me, and Dupree, an utterly useless and unfunny Owen Wilson vehicle.
On paper this looks like a disaster. Joe Johnston was perfect for the first film and struck the balance of patriotism and old-timeyness without ever really seeming like it was over the top and corny. Maybe they felt like his best asset was only in realizing 1940’s Cap? Maybe? Since this new Captain America will be set in present day, I guess they felt like they could get anyone. But of the people they could have gotten, why two guys with no action-adventure chops? Why not F. Gary Gray? He’s at least made some competent action films, and with Marvels close involvement in their films, I am sure that they can bulldoze a director any way they like. Marvel Studios looks like a producers dream studio. Maybe I just answered my own question though. Maybe Marvel wants heavy involvement in the film and would rather work with less proven talent to keep production issues disagreements at bay. Getting two relative unknowns who probably really don’t want to fuck up means Marvel will have far more say in the film. They are like the George Steinbrenner of studios. A lot of involvement both good and bad.
But then again, maybe Marvel is just taking another Favreau-vian shot in the dark. Prior to Iron Man, he directed Made, Elf, and Zathura. If you combine Made’s dialogue, with Zathura’s adventure effects, you were still really far away from imagining he could do Iron Man. Maybe that is what this is all over again.
This is the first directing choice I have questioned SINCE Favreau, so I hope I am just as wrong from being dubious, as I was then.