Nia DaCosta first Black woman director to debut film at No. 1

“Candyman” topped the weekend box office, raking in $22 million from August 27 to 29. The film’s director, Nia DaCosta is now the first Black woman director to debut a movie in the No. 1 spot at the weekend box office, according to Deadline.

The horror film, which DaCosta co-wrote with Jordan Peele and Win Rosenfeld, is a sequel to the original 1992 flick. The new “Candyman” ignores two previous sequels — “Candyman: Farewell to the Flesh” (1995) and “Candyman: Day of the Dead” (1999) — and picks up in present day, gentrified Chicago, according to Entertainment Tonight. 

“I’m such a big fan, I thought that I’ll come at it from the perspective of someone who just lovingly wants to see what else this legend and this story could do,” DaCosta told ET in an interview earlier this month. 

Nia DaCosta
Nia DaCosta attends the 11th Annual AAFCA Awards on January 22, 2020, in Los Angeles. Mark Von Holden/AP

“There are so many more Black filmmakers working and so many different kinds of genres today, so I’m really excited about that and I’m excited to be a part of that,” she said in the ET interview, adding that it is “cool to see the proliferation of Black horror stories.”

“I’m really excited to see where else it can go and what kinds of stories we can tell around the Black experience that don’t necessarily have to do with historical racial trauma,” DaCosta said. 

According to Deadline, “Candyman” is the second-highest grossing film for a Black female director in the 3-day domestic weekend box office. Ava DuVernay’s 2018 “A Wrinkle In Time,” which debuted in the No. 2 spot, earned $33.1 million its first weekend. DuVernay was the first Black female director to direct a more than $100 million production from a major Hollywood studio.

Next behind DuVernay and DaCosta in box office debuts are Tina Gordon’s “Little” ($15.4 million), Stella Meghie’s “The Photograph” ($12.1 million), and Melina Matsoukas’ “Queen & Slim” ($11.89 million).

DaCosta is currently working on a Captain Marvel sequel, “The Marvels,” which will make her first Black woman to direct a Marvel Studios picture, Deadline reports.

She also directed “Little Woods,” which premiered at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival and was released theatrically in 2019, and two episodes of Netflix’s “Top Boy.”