As of today, Creed II has surpassed the century mark at the box office domestically, which makes Steven Caple Jr. the fourth Black director in 2018 to have a $100M grossing film domestically. That represents a new record, and also makes him the 14th Black director in total. In 2017 Jordan Peele (Get Out), F. Gary Gray (Fast 8) and Malcolm D. Lee (Girls Trip) had crossed that mark.
For this year, Caple Jr. joins Ryan Coogler (Creed director), who had the blockbuster Black Panther ($700M, 3rd all-time domestically, & the top grossing film this year), Antoine Fuqua, who directed Denzel Washington in The Equalizer 2 with $102M, and Ava DuVernay, who became the first Black female to direct a $100M grossing film with A Wrinkle in Time ($100.4M). All four films have Black leads.
Creed II is the continuation of the Rocky saga and sequel to the 2015 critically acclaimed and crowd-pleasing 2015 hit Creed, which took in more than $170 million at the worldwide box office. Released by MGM and Annapurna Pictures on Nov. 21 during Thanksgiving weekend, Creed II opened up #2 at the box office with $35M (for the 3 day weekend) and $55M (during the holiday frame), making it the largest opening ever for a live-action film during Thanksgiving.
Caple Jr. directed the film from an original screenplay written by Stallone based on characters from the Rocky franchise, with Michael B. Jordan and Stallone reprising their roles of Adonis Creed and Rocky Balboa respectively. In this sequel, Creed faces off against Viktor Drago, son of Ivan Drago.
Also reprising their roles from the first film are Tessa Thompson as Bianca, Phylicia Rashad as Mary Anne, and Wood Harris as Tony ‘Little Duke’ Burton. The new cast is rounded out with Florian “The Big Nasty” Munteanu as Viktor Drago, Dolph Lundgren returning to the role of Ivan Drago, and Russell Hornsby as Buddy Marcelle.
Of the eight films in the franchise, Creed II is the 5th to hit $100M. Sylvester Stallone has starred in all of the films. He received a nomination for Best Actor for Rocky (1978) and a Best Supporting Actor nod for Creed (2016).
Here are the other African American directors whose films grossed $100M domestically and the amount of days it took.
Ryan Coogler’s 2018 Black Panther (2 Days, $700M total domestic cume)
F. Gary Gray’s 2017 The Fate of the Furious (4 Days, $225M)
F. Gary Gray’s 2015 Straight Outta Compton (9 Days, $161M)
Tim Story’s 2005 Fantastic Four (10 days, $154M)
Tim Story’s 2007 Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (12 days, $131M)
Keenan Ivory Wayans’s 2000 Scary Movie (14 days, $157M)
Jordan Peele’s 2017 Get Out (16 days, $175M)
Malcolm D. Lee’s 2017 Girl Trip (28 days, $140M)
John Singleton’s 2003 2 Fast 2 Furious (17 days, $127M)
Tim Story’s 2014 Ride Along (23 days, $134M)
Steven Caple Jr’s 2018 Creed II (23 days, $100M and still going)
Clark Johnson’s 2003 S.W.A.T (24 days, ($116M)
Ryan Coogler’s 2015 Creed (38 Days, $109M)
Antoine Fuqua’s 2018 The Equalizer 2 (45 days, $102M)
Lee Daniels with 2013 Lee Daniels’ The Butler (46 days, $116M)
Antoine Fuqua’s 2014 The Equalizer (66 days, $101M)
Peter Ramsey’s 2012 Rise of the Guardians (67 days, $103M)
F. Gary Gray’s 2003 The Italian Job (95 days, $106.1M)
Ava DuVernay’s 2018 A Wrinkle In Time (102 days, $100.4M)
Sidney Poitier’s 1980 Stir Crazy took in a domestic total $101.3M but there are no records that show how many days it took to reach that mark. It’s worth noting “Crazy” was the first time a film directed by an African-American earned more than $100 million.
Fun Fact: Tim Story (’91), Ryan Coogler (’11) and Steven Caple Jr. (’14) are all grads from USC School of Cinematic Arts. John Singleton (’90) went to USC undergrad.