Creed starring Michael B. Jordan was a box office knockout earning $110 million and solidifying Jordan and director Ryan Coogler’s chemistry in a modern-day coming of age story. When rumors of a follow-up began to swirl many assumed Coogler would return to the director’s chair, but late Monday night (Dec. 11) it was announced the second-installment would be helmed by a newcomer.
Cleveland native Steven Caple Jr. was reportedly handpicked by Coogler, Jordan and Sylvester Stalone to direct Creed 2. According to Variety, production is expected to begin in Philadelphia in spring 2018, just three years after the original. The gig is Caple’s first feature at a major studio.
Named as one of Forbes’ 2018 30 Under 30, the 29-year-old caught the attention of Jordan, Stallone and MGM and Warner Bros. executives when his film The Land premiered at Sundance 2016.
“We recognized Steven’s talent for telling ambitious stories with incredible heart in The Land. We are confident what he will bring to Creed 2 will result in a story that resonates with audiences all over the world,” producer Irwin Winkler told reporters.
Initially, Stallone was among the pool of considered directors but after a rigorous search, Jordan and Stallone decided upon Caple to spearhead the second installment. Jordan took to Instagram Monday to make the announcement official.
Stallone gave Caple his props too, telling Variety he believes the young director will make the story more relatable to this generation.
“The character of Adonis Creed reflects this generation and its challenges. I believe it’s important for the director to also be a part of this generation like I was in mine, to make the story as relatable as possible,” he said. “We are extremely lucky to have the talented young filmmaker Steven Caple Jr. step up and accept the role of director. I’m confident Michael B. Jordan will hit it out of the park.”
The movie is set to release Nov. 21, 2018.