Captain America Gets A Director

Published 6 years ago by , Updated August 18th, 2013 at 6:08 pm,

captain america 522 Captain America Gets A Director

It’s official, folks! Marvel Studios has put out a production update stating a director has been tapped to helm the upcoming corner-piece to Marvel’s Avengers puzzle, The First Avenger: Captain America. So, without further ado, the man bringing us the adventures of the Star-Spangled Avenger will be none other than:

Joe Johnston (???).

For those not familiar, Johnston’s resume includes family adventure films such as Honey, I Shrunk The Kids and Jumanji, inspirational films such as October Sky, a couple of popcorn-clunkers such as Hidalgo and Jurassic Park III, and the upcoming creature-feature reboot, The Wolf Man.

Yes, this is the man Marvel is hanging their hopes on to turn The First Avenger: Captain America into a box office smash. But with a resume as varied as Johnston’s, what kind of Cap movie are we to expect?

Before we tear into him, it should be noted that Joe Johnston has considerable experience with creating some of America’s most treasured cinematic heroes. Johnston started in the movie biz as a visual effects artist, working on a few small films you might remember as the original Star Wars Trilogy and Raiders Of The Lost Ark. The man knows how to turn everyman heroes into indelible legends.

Johnston also has some experience in the superhero-flick business. He directed the 1991 film The Rocketeer, a WWII superhero flick that definitely left a lasting impression on this young blogger. (It also had some of the coolest visual f/x I remember; it truly made meĀ  believe that a man could fly.)

Joe Johnston will Direct The First Avenger: Captain America

Taking all that past experience into account along with the assumption that whatever Johnston must be doing with The Wolf Man has impressed at least somebody around the Marvel Studios offices, I (and likely Marvel) expect Johnston will be able to construct a Cap film that is at once big in scope, furious in action, with an old-time 1930s – 1940s, WWII feel. It will also likely try to appeal to audiences both young and old, who remember what’s like to be treated to quality epic adventure movies. Here’s the movie’s official logline from Marvel:

In the early days of the Marvel Universe, Steve Rogers volunteers to participate in an experimental program that turns him into the Super Soldier known as Captain America.

Sounds like the standard plot you’d expect; my only hope is that they represent the character of Steve Rogers/Captain America properly. But then, we won’t know for sure what we’re getting until The First Avenger: Captain America hits theaters on May 6, 2011.

In the meantime, what do you think? Is Cap getting the treatment he deserves, or is Marvel selling him short by going with Johnston?

Source: Marvel Studios

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  1. I never thought Favreau would turn out Iron Man as well as he did… Can lightening strike twice for Marvel?

    Now, let’s rework the title. :D

  2. October Sky is one of my favorite Films.
    As for the title ,

  3. As Zipper says, I doubt many had faith that Favreau would turn in a movie as great as Iron Man when he was announced as it’s director so with luck, the same could happen with Johnston. Plus, he has his action chops already.

  4. Dunno what to expect. Favreau came through on Iron Man though so I’ll give this dude a change.

  5. chance*

  6. @Zipper

    Lightning struck twice already with Louis Leterrier, whose previous credits included Transporter 2 and Danny The Dog (read: Unleash), and the direction of The Incredible Hulk. He’s never handled anything at that magnitude and, no pun intended, smashed it. At this point, I trust Marvel with my stock portfolio. Until they go wrong, I’ll blindly support their decision.

    Now what’s wrong with the title?

  7. Um… not to repeat what’s already been said… but, yeah… Jon Favreau.

    ‘Nuff said.

  8. This definitely isn’t a “Safe” decision. He’s got some pretty big shoes to fill and not a tonne of experience. It looks like they’re taking what little they know of his abilities and hoping for the best. Perhaps him and Green Bay QB Aaron Rogers should go grab a beer.

  9. 1st, I dunno if that Rocketeer movie is such a great example of his directing ability and his WWII take, but then, he was much younger and a starting director at the time. Plus, is it known that the film will take place in a WWII setting or do they plan on drifting away from the comic book roots?

  10. I gotta go with the majority here. I don’t mind this choice at all and will wait to see what happens :).

    And I don’t have a problem with the title either.

  11. The Rocketeer was awesome. I saw it a hundred times as a kid! I personally don’t have a problem with this.

    Now if only we can get Colin Ferguson cast as Cap!

  12. Heck yes Deadpool. I fell in love with the Rocketeer(not in a gay way, I mean I love the movie) and this guy can bring the same magic to this period piece. The key is showing the integrity and strong character both personality and morality wise of Steve Rogers. That being said, we need a fresh face for the role, one that Hollywood hasn’t already chewed up and spit out. Speaking of, anyone know how I can audition for the part? I’d give up the next three years to lose weight, play Steve, bulk up, and play Cap, and I’ve always wanted to break into acting, and this seems like it would be a great start.

  13. Huntthejest & Deadpool: both well said about the Rocketeer. It is an very under-appresiated film.
    IMO, Marvel is consistant in picking directors whom narrate the story very similar if not identical to the tone of the present day comics. I have no doubt that Johnston will do an excellent job with telling Cap’s origin story. Johnston’s films like the following: Octber Sky, JP3, Jumanji and Hidalgo all carry an essences of great heart-felt pride, humor, humilite and edge of your seat excitment. I just wish the actor that played the Rocketeer was young enough to be casted as Steve Rogers. :(

  14. I’ve always thought The Rocketeer was drastically underrated and unfairly ignored at the box office. One of the things that made it work so well was the authentic period feel. If the plan is to do Cap in his original WW II guise, and with the same sort of joie de vivre we saw in The Rocketeer, I think Johnston is a good choice…

  15. I like the sound of this…Marvel are sticking with guys who can deliver a fun/action-packed adventure movie as Iron-Man & The Incredible Hulk…i think all the directors will be working as team mates to make sure the movies all blend somehow…taking us towards The Avengers!
    Rocketeer was a great wee movie…at a time when there were not an-awful lot of superhero movies to go see!

  16. I’ll do it! Straight up guys, lemme know if you hear anything on auditioning for the part. I was born to play the Captain.

  17. i actually like the title a lot, but there is one problem i have with it. any sequels they plan to make about Cap (that don’t have to do with Avengers) will kind of sound silly. The First Avenger: Captain America 2? At that point it just sounds too cumbersome. You’d have to change it for any sequels. But if they can find a way to make it work, then I’m all for this title

  18. @Joe

    Just to argue, comics have pretty lame titles… Capt. America #56, Amazing Spider-man #546, etc. I think what Batman is doing makes for a better setup. Nolan’s comments on why Batman Begins was “Batman Begins” are a solid argument; when applied to The Dark Knight, they reach complete understanding. Titles that aren’t bound to just one of a series are more interesting

  19. Please let it only be Cap Am in the movie–no other superheroes! How goofy it would be for him to stumble across one of the Avengers or some other superhero!

  20. Jack,
    Cap wont stumble into any other superheroes .
    They will FIND and revive him.

  21. I believe it’s time for a captain america movie, they should make it a bit like the original movie but a little different from it.

  22. I liked the rocketeer as well, but felt it was more of a stylized 1940′s feel, very comic bookish. It was similar to the movie with Jude Law and Angelina Jolie. I can’t remember the title except it was something and the world of tomorrow. I’m afraid that’s what we’re going to get, which isn’t necessarily bad. I just think it would work better for Superman than Cap. I’d rather a straight up raw 1940′s like Saving Private Ryan. I think the realism is needed to fit seamlessly with the Avengers.

  23. OK… I’ve been saying for 8 years that Marvel made a mistake in casting Toby Mcgure as Spidey. I still love the movies, but could never get past Toby’s girlish voice. I’ve argued all along that Jake Gyllenhall would fit the Peter Parker role much better. I remember the debates about who should play Spiderman, than I see the movie October Sky, and I knew Jake Gyllenhall would be perfect. Now Joe Johnston is set to direct Captain America. Hmmm, could Jake Gyllenhall be cast as Cap? There is history there, and Jake has shown he can play the action roles.

  24. Worst suggestion ever. Sorry, nothing personal, but that is a God-awful idea.

  25. Easy to bust on someone, when you can’t express you own intelligent ideas. In my opinion as a huge Marvel comics fan for 40 years…. I think it’s a great idea. You’re entitled to your opinion, but to just throw an insult at me (even though you try to cover it by saying “nothing personal”), and not have any sort of substance is offensive. If you would read my other posts, you’d see I don’t support JG as Cap. I simply (obviously not simple enough for the simple minded) pointed out the the FACT that the director from October Sky is now the director for Captain America. JG fits the age criteria and the acting chops. That’s all I pointed. My guess is you are one of those morons that is screaming for Triple-H to play Cap? (no offense Doom)

  26. huntthejest,

    Which idea? And I guess you mean, in your opinon it’s a bad idea?

  27. Usually, one would spell opinion with two “i”s.

    In my comment above, I did not go that route.

  28. Bruce, probably being blonde is at the bottom of the list when casting Cap. If they pick a guy with dark hair, they’d just dye it blonde. Halle Berry had white hair as Storm. But she’d look great with any color hair… or no hair for that matter. So maybe not the best example.
    Are you suggesting Rock play Cap? I think the biggest mistake Marvel could do is cast a wrestler as Cap. Given the recent history and success of the top-notch actors they cast lately, I’d a bet a good chunk of money that they’d not disappoint real Marvel fans by casting a wrestler. It simply would not happen. Although of all the wrestlers, the Rock is not a bad action guy. He’d be great as Black Panther or Falcon.

  29. Is it just me? Or does Joe Johnston look like some middle-aged version of Steve Rogers? Like cap from the Planet X series? Am I crazy for taking that leap?