After hiring a woman to co-direct Captain Marvel, Marvel Studios has hired a female director to lead a new film all on her own. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Australian filmmaker Cate Shortland will be helming the forthcoming Black Widow stand-alone film starring Scarlett Johansson. Shortland comes from a dramatic background with films like Lore and Somersault to her credit, and she delivered one of last year’s outstanding horror films, Berlin Syndrome. That she directed all of those movies by herself surely demonstrated to Marvel that she was capable of shouldering the responsibility on her own, emboldening them to tap her as the first female director to take on a super property for the company as a solo mission. Marvel reportedly met with more than 70 candidates to find the right fit for the film, with Amma Asante, Kimberly Peirce, and Maggie Betts also in final contention for the job. Shortland will work from a script by Jac Schaeffer, who is also working on the this-time-with-women reboot of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, called Nasty Women.
Cate Shortland. Photo: Alexander Koerner/Getty Images