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Fate of the Furious Director in Talks to Direct Men in Black Reboot/Spinoff


“Straight Outta Compton” and “The Fate of the Furious” director F. Gary Gray is in talks to direct Sony Pictures’ “Men in Black” spinoff.


According to Deadline, Sony Pictures is handing the directorial reigns on the upcoming untitled Men in Black reboot over to F. Gary Gray. Gray has been consistently making hits since 1995’s Friday, but he broke in to the awards realm with 2015’s Straight Outta Compton. The critical and commercial success of that movie led to Gray helming the eighth film in the Fast and Furious franchise to new box office heights, and now it appears he’s moving to a franchise of a different sort at a different studio.

Though there had been plans to cross the series over with the Jump Street movies, the current idea is simply to chronicle a new chapter in the secret law-keeping force that polices the planet's truly alien immigrant population. Deadline says Gray will be directing the film from a script by Iron Man screenwriters Matt Holloway and Art Marcum, and that Spielberg is onboard as an executive producer. The publication says neither Smith or Jones is expected to return to the franchise, and instead the new Men In Black film will employ an entirely new cast. As Deadline words it, the premise of the original comics is “a covert force policing the alien population hiding in plain sight.”

The original Men in Black, starring the winning combo of Smith and Jones, came out twenty years ago in the summer of 1997, and grossed $589 million worldwide. Its 2002 sequel, Men in Black II, grossed $441 million worldwide and was less enthusiastically received by critics and audiences alike, while the 2012 threequel MIB 3 took the series back on course creatively and earned $642 million worldwide, despite a troubled filming process. Barry Sonnenfeld directed all three original pictures.