DC has taken another page from the Marvel playbook, hiring a lauded indie-film writer-director to guide one of its upcoming films. For Marvel, it’s Chloe Zhao directing Eternals; for DC, it’s Promising Young Woman writer-director Emerald Fennell, who Variety reports will write DC Film and Bad Robot’s Zatanna.
Fennell’s Promising Young Woman is nominated for five Oscars this year, including Best Director and Best Original Screenplay nods for Fennell. She was a showrunner on the second season of Killing Eve and is also an actress, with roles in Call the Midwife and The Crown.
Zatanna will be her first time tackling a franchise character—one who has yet to be cast. (No director has been announced for the film either.) Zatanna is a magician who first appeared in Hawkman in 1964 (a double-story issue that debuted the character in “The Girl Who Split In Two” but also featured a story titled “The Machine That Magnetized Men!“). Her costume, a variation on a tuxedo, is unmistakeable. She has a long history with the Justice League, though her story changes depending on which DC plotline you’re looking at. She’s appeared in animated DC stories a lot, but the only previous live-action version of Zatanna was played by Serinda Swan on Smallville.
Zatanna will join Wonder Woman and Harley Quinn as the third female DC characters with her own films. There’s no word yet on when we can expect to see her magic on screen.