EXCLUSIVE: A year after becoming one of Netflix’s most popular original films to date, the sequel to The Old Guard is gearing up quickly as Netflix and Skydance zero in on a next director to take the helm. Sources tell Deadline that Victoria Mahoney has come on to direct The Old Guard 2, with stars Charlize Theron, KiKi Layne, Matthias Schoenaerts, Marwan Kenzari, Luca Marinelli, Veronica Ngo and Chiwetel Ejiofor returning to reprise their roles.
Mahoney steps in for Gina Prince-Bythewood, who directed the first but decided to not come back to helm the sequel as the success of the first film has led to several news jobs including Sony’s The Woman King starring Viola Davis and Thuso Mbedu.
“I love The Old Guard and the story and characters I was honored to put into the world. It was exciting to disrupt the genre,” said Prince-Bythewood. “I have decided not to direct the sequel, but will stay on as a producer. I leave our franchise in good hands as my girl Vic Mahoney takes on this next chapter.”
Mahoney has become one of the more in-demand directors after becoming second unit director on J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, making her the first woman and first Black woman to direct a Star Wars film. Mahoney had a number of projects she was considering, but the opportunity to direct the Netflix film was too good to pass up.
“Genuinely blown backwards by the collective levels of talent, skill and savvy that went into carving The Old Guard,” Mahoney said. “I must’ve watched it over a hundred times, and as such, cannot communicate the true measure of my excitement–being invited on The Old Guard journey alongside ferocious badasses. Ever eager to continue pushing the genre for action-loving audiences. Warmly tipping my hat to the world Gina, Charlize, Rucka, Fernández, Skydance, Netflix, Marc Evans Productions, Denver & Delilah Films and the entire Team daringly put forward.”
Greg Rucka and Leandro Fernández graphic novel series, the original pic followed a covert team of immortal mercenaries who are suddenly exposed and must now fight to keep their identity a secret just as an unexpected new member is discovered. The original is one of Netflix’s most popular films to date and was seen by 78M households in its first four weeks.
Rucka will pen the sequel with David Ellison, Dana Goldberg and Don Granger producing for Skydance; Theron, Beth Kono and AJ Dix producing for Denver and Delilah and Marc Evans producing for Marc Evans Productions. Prince-Bythewood will also produce. Rucka will exec produce.
“We are beyond thrilled that Vic is joining The Old Guard team,” said Theron, Kono and Dix. “Her passion for these characters and her ambitious vision for the movie overwhelmed us all. We are grateful for the opportunity to work with her.”
The sequel also marks a major milestone for Skydance as it is now the only studio to supply Amazon, Netflix and Apple with tentpole franchises and signature content. With the success of The Old Guard (Netflix) and The Tomorrow War and Without Remorse (Amazon Prime Video), in 2021 alone Skydance delivered top franchises at two different streamers with a Tomorrow War sequel already in development.
Mahoney is repped by CAA and Nina Shaw of Del Shaw Moonves Tanaka Finkelstein & Lezcano.
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