‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’ director, Kari Skogland, has found her next endeavor as she takes over the director's chair from Patti Jenkins on ‘Cleopatra’ starring Gal Gadot. With its initial pairing of Jenkins and Gadot, the ‘Cleopatra’ film was picked up by Paramount Pictures after a bidding war that also saw Universal, Warner Bros, Netflix, and Apple in the mix. The studio feels they have a hot project on their hands and has been fast-tracking the movie since. The 1963 classic ‘Cleopatra’ starring Elizabeth Taylor was a massive undertaking that almost bankrupted 20th Century Fox, and new iterations of the film have been in development for years at various studios. But this Gadot-led flick seems to be the only one that will make it to a coronation.
Cleopatra will be Skogland's first project following her success with the Marvel Disney+ series ‘The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’ last year. That show, which tackled big subjects such as race, nationalism, and justice in America, earned Skogland praise for her personal approach to its characters and situations.
Over the years, Skogland has served as a director on a number of major television series, including ‘House of Cards’, ‘Vikings’, ‘The Walking Dead’, ‘The Punisher’, and ‘The Handmaid's Tale’. This will be her first theatrical film since 2008's ‘Fifty Dead Men Walking’ with Ben Kingsley.
As per reports, Skogland is replacing Jenkins as the ‘Cleopatra’ director, while Jenkins will stay on board as a producer for the film. Jenkins has reportedly left the director's chair in order to shift more focus to ‘Wonder Woman 3’ and ‘Rogue Squadron’. Notably, this means Jenkins likely won't have a film released in the next couple of years. ‘Wonder Woman 3’ is not expected to enter production until 2023 and is likely aiming for a 2024 release, while Rogue Squadron was just delayed significantly after it was expected to shoot next year. Reportedly, Lucasfilm and Jenkins are now hoping for Jenkins to return to the film once she's finished with her other projects.