Marvel Studios kick-started its Multiversal storytelling venture in 2021 with Season 1 of Tom Hiddleston's Loki on Disney+. Featuring director Kate Herron at the helm, Hiddleston's long-standing God of Mischief had the chance to finally explore his own epic solo story as he traveled through space and time. It also became the first MCU show to officially be renewed for a second season, an announcement that came immediately at the end of Episode 6.
On top of Loki, Marvel has put a renewed effort into making sure that its projects for Phase 4 and beyond have the best of the best in the director's chair. This includes Academy Award-winner Taika Waititi coming back for Thor: Love and Thunder, while fan-favorite Shawn Levy recently joined Marvel's efforts on Deadpool 3 with Ryan Reynolds.
With so many new entries about to join the Marvel Studios legacy, Marvel is always on the hunt for who may lead the way on the next movie or Disney+ show. Recently, reports even detailed a directing duo that almost took the reins on Tom Hiddleston's solo series before the job went to Kate Herron.
Daniel Director Duo Almost Led Loki Season 1
In an interview with IndieWire, directing duo Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert revealed that they were in early talks to direct Season 1 of Loki for Marvel Studios.
While they almost took a meeting with Marvel Studios, the Daniels were in the middle of developing their own Multiverse project, Everything Everywhere All at Once, at the same time. This led to the team not taking the MCU job with Marvel Studios ahead of Phase 4's debut, according to Scheinert:
“There were meetings with Marvel about ‘Loki’ that we didn’t even take. We were trying to make our own multiverse movie,”
Kwan interjected. “No, the meeting was set, and we went, but by the time we went we said we probably weren’t going to do it,” he said. “We were trying to shoot our own movie at the same time.”
Everything Everywhere All at Once is a high-concept sci-fi adventure that follows a small business owner (played by Michelle Yeoh) who is faced with saving a collapsing Multiverse that conflicts with her interpersonal struggles as a mother and a dreamer.
The Daniels directing duo settled on the idea that they were more comfortable developing ideas from ground zero, giving them the chance to toss "anything that's not working." While they have respect for filmmakers that are "able to play in someone else’s sandbox," they saw that as a much more difficult prospect for them to take on:
“Then we can just throw out anything that’s not working. I respect people who are able to play in someone else’s sandbox but that’s kind of intimidating because if there’s a preexisting fanbase for a character, and a lore, a mythology and I’m not allowed to throw out something that’s not working, that seems hard.”
They're also not as apt to take on major movies or projects that come in franchises as big as those like Marvel. Kwan revealed that their current focus is now on "TV stuff with some friends:"
“That’s the harder thing. We’re developing TV stuff with some friends and we’re really excited that something will come out of that one day. With movie stuff, we’re still lost at sea. Our brains were waiting for this movie to come out to really figure out what we’re doing next."
Schienert added to this idea by admitting that they "don't really love meetings."
Loki A Little Big for Almost-Directors
Kwan and Scheinert are slowly building an impressive resume with movies like Swiss Army Man, giving them a list of projects that looks awfully similar to those of many other MCU directors. After all, Joe and Anthony Russo were best known for TV shows like Community before taking on two films about Captain America and the Avengers while Taika Waititi first made his name on indie projects like What We Do In The Shadows.
While the Daniels seemed to have ideas for where to go with Loki, it seems that the duo wasn't as comfortable as they needed to be with the structure that comes in an interconnected MCU show. This was particularly the case with Hiddleston's solo series, which not only tied back to the God of Mischief's past in The Avengers but also set up the first signs of the Multiverse tearing apart.
Following Herron's efforts on Season 1, Moon Knight directing duo Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead will take the reigns on Season 2 as things get even weirder and crazier for the next round. Whether the Daniels reconsider their Marvel prospects in the future is a mystery, but Marvel will continue their search for top candidates like them in the meantime.
The first season of Loki is now available to stream on Disney+. Season 2 will reportedly begin filming in Summer 2022.