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The Film Strip: ‘The Marvels’ Director Nia DaCosta Makes ‘Marvel’ History | EUR Exclusive

Director Nia DaCosta on the set of Marvel Studios' THE MARVELS
Director Nia DaCosta on the set of Marvel Studios’ THE MARVELS. Photo by Laura Radford. © 2023 MARVEL.

*Nia DaCosta is the first Black woman, and the youngest, to helm a “Marvel” movie. DaCosta, known for directing “Candyman,” produced by Jordan Peele, puts her stamp on “The Marvels,” in theaters Now.

I caught up with DaCosta recently in New York at the 27th Annual Urbanworld International Film Festival.

Asked about being hailed as the first Black female and the youngest to direct an MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) movie, DaCosta was not fazed by it all.

She said her only concern was doing a remarkable job. “I wasn’t really thinking about all of that,” she said.

DaCosta added: “It was the middle of the pandemic, and I was in quarantine. I didn’t have time to think about all that stuff. I had to figure out how to make this big-ass movie.”

Karen McMullen (Festival Director, Urbanworld), Nia DaCosta (Director) and Tambay Obenson
(L-R) Karen McMullen (Festival Director, Urbanworld), Nia DaCosta (Director) and Tambay Obenson (Head Film Curator, Urbanworld)  Abigail Ekue Photo
Teyonah Parris as Captain Monica Rambeau in THE MARVELS. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studio
Teyonah Parris as Captain Monica Rambeau in THE MARVELS. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2023 MARVEL.

On being the first Black female, she mused: “Obviously, it’s meaningful, but I think it’s meaningful in a way that exists outside of me. I will definitely not be the only one. Marvel’s such a small part of the industry. I can name so many Black female directors. So, it’s not a big deal. One of the execs actually said, ‘We didn’t hire you for that [being a Black woman], but it tells these other studios that they should be hiring Black women.’ I said, you are right.”

(L-R): Iman Vellani, Brie Larson, and Teyonah Parris. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios
(L-R): Iman Vellani, Brie Larson, and Teyonah Parris. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2023 MARVEL.

Do the titles first and youngest put more pressure on DaCosta? A confident DaCosta says no.

“I don’t feel pressure in that sense so much as I’m grateful to be that person, I guess. And I’m also excited for more people, more Black women to take the helm in this Universe—and big films like this in general. The pressure just comes from myself, wanting to do the best job I can possibly do. Marvel’s so collaborative and because they’re so supportive, it’s an easier ride than you think.”

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MORE NEWS ON EURWEB: Nia DaCosta (‘Candyman’) Now the First Black Female Film Director to Open #1 At Box Office

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