27 People Who Could (or Should) Direct ‘The Batman’


Wishful Thinking

Ryan Coogler

With Fruitvale Station, Ryan Coogler made it perfectly clear that he is a director worth watching. With Creed, he made it perfectly clear that he’s one of the brightest and most promising young directors working at the moment. Hell, Creed is so good that he should be allowed to do whatever he wants for a decade, minimum. Unfortunately for Batman fans, Coogler decided to take on Marvel’s Black Panther, which means that he may be tied up in another comic book universe for the time being. But hey, we can dream, right?

Rich Famuyiwa Dope header

Rick Famuyiwa

Although Rick Famuyiwa has been directing since the last ’90s, he truly broke though with 2015’s coming-of-age film Dope. Suddenly, he was in demand! And then he was going to direct The Flash! And then he wasn’t going to direct The Flash anymore and everyone kept on wondering what the heck was going on behind-the-scenes to keep directors bouncing off this particular film. Still, if Famuyiwa was ready to direct the Scarlet Speedster, he’s certainly ready to direct the Dark Knight…but it’s hard to imagine him returning to this particular table after those dreaded creative differences put an end to his first round of superhero ambitions.


Kim Jee-woon

After making his Hollywood debut with The Last Stand, Kim Jee-woon promptly returned to South Korea to make the very good historical thriller The Age of Shadows. Would be up for making another American movie? That’s the big question. The Last Stand, while pretty fun, was a box office bomb that showcases very little of what makes Kim’s Korean work so special. If you want to daydream about a Batman film directed by one of Korea’s slickest and most exciting filmmaking, you have to watch The Good, the Bad, the Weird and I Saw the Devil, films so deliriously entertaining and bombastic that they make the head spin. Could a Batman movie lure him back to Hollywood? Do we even want him to potentially waste his valuable time outside of a foreign film industry that knows how to properly utilize his talents?

Michelle MacLaren and Andrew Lincoln - The Walking Dead

Michelle MacLaren

Like Rick Famuyiwa, Michelle MacLaren was going to be a member of the DC comic book movie director club. Then she left Wonder Woman over creative differences and went back to being only one of the best filmmakers currently toiling away on television. If Warner Bros. could tempt her back to the fold (and that’s a huge if), it’s easy to imagine MacLaren rocking a Batman movie. Her work on Breaking Bad was nothing short of extraordinary and her episodes of Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, and Westworld have been exceptional as well. Someday, Michelle MacLaren is going to make a feature film and blow our brains out the back of our heads. Maybe Warner Bros. could send her a nice fruit basket and it could be The Batman?

James Mangold directing The Wolverine

James Mangold

If James Mangold wasn’t already the director of The Wolverine and Logan, he’d be an excellent choice to helm The Batman. Hell, he’d still be an excellent choice to helm The Batman, but like with Ryan Coogler, it’s hard to imagine everyone muddying the waters of these various cinematic universes too much. And that’s a shame, because Mangold is the kind of working director who stands head and shoulders above the rest – he’s capable and smart and makes the exact kind of studio fare you hope to see when you settle in for an evening at your local multiplex.

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