Marvel Confirms Ryan Coogler As 'Black Panther' Director

This has seemed like a done deal for a few months now but Marvel has officially announced Creed and Fruitvale Station's Ryan Coogler as the director of Black Panther. Coogler had first been rumored last fall and seemingly confirmed a month ago, but apparently there were still some kinks to be ironed out before he could take over the anticipated superhero film featuring Marvel's first black lead since the Blade franchise concluded.

One of the most sought-after directors around, Coogler's likely involvement in Black Panther has made it unlikely he'll return to direct a sequel to Creed, the boxing drama that has been a critical and box office champ. Here's what Marvel President Kevin Feige had to say about what Coogler brings to the table...

“We are fortunate to have such an esteemed filmmaker join the Marvel family. The talents Ryan showcased in his first two films easily made him our top choice to direct ‘Black Panther.’  Many fans have waited a long time to see Black Panther in his own film, and with Ryan we know we’ve found the perfect director to bring T’Challa’s story to life.”

The only confirmed casting so far is Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa aka Black Panther, the king of the technologically-advanced African nation of Wakanda. It's the only place in the world where the precious metal Vibranium, used to forge Captain America's shield, can be found. Joe Robert Cole is penning the screenplay, but given Coogler's screenwriting abilities he may add his own touches to it.

Black Panther opens February 16th 2018. The character will first appear in this May's Captain America: Civil War, and he'll be seen again in Avengers: Infinity War, which Feige has said will be especially connected to Black Panther's story.