‘Candyman’ Director Nia DaCosta Made Box Office History — But Some People Are Still Calling It Jordan Peele’s Movie

“I was prepared for no one to care that I was a part of it.”

Nia DaCosta Jordan Peele Candyman Getty Images / Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock

While movie fanatics and fans of the original film rejoiced over last week's release of "Candyman," they quickly realized something was amiss — director and co-writer Nia DaCosta's name was nowhere to be seen in numerous headlines. 

Nia DaCosta deserves credit for 'Candyman' — not just Jordan Peele.

When "Candyman" was trending on Twitter, users called out the description dubbing the movie "Jordan Peele's latest horror flick" despite Peele only being listed as a producer and co-writer. 


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Some pointed out Peele's name was likely being used for clicks, but many clapped back in defense of DaCosta and her work. 

Nia DaCosta addressed her lack of credit for making 'Candyman.'

She directly acknowledged her lack of press, admitting she was, "prepared for no one to care that I was a part of it.”


DaCosta thanked Twitter users for calling attention to her name, adding that if it'd been another female filmmaker in her place, she'd have been doing the exact same thing. 

"Like, ‘Hey, you should probably be talking about the woman making the movie, not just the guy who’s more famous,'” she added. 

Fans pointed out that Nia DaCosta directed 'Candyman' — Jordan Peele just produced it. 

"Producers = Owns Films. Directors= Creative Vision ...That's it. It's His Movie. Not Hers. Stop Saying This," one person tweeted.  

Other users weren't having it. 


"It's James Gunn's The Suicide Squad — not Charles Roven's," someone pointed out. "Sam Raimi's Spider-Man — not Laura Ziskin's. Chloe Zhao's Eternals — not Kevin Feige's. It is the director's vision and it is credited to them. Stop saying words that don't make sense." 

Nia DaCosta is the first Black woman to top the U.S Box Office. 

Other Black female directors like Ava DuVernay ("A Wrinkle in Time") and Gina Prince-Blythewood ("Love and Basketball") have come close to the record, though DaCosta is the first to reach the top.

During the film's initial domestic weekend, "Candyman" earned an estimated $22.3 million, successfully beating the projected $15 million. 

Nia DaCosta addressed the challenges Black female directors still face.

In an interview, DaCosta spoke about Hollywood's expectations of Black artists. Paired with the rampant misogyny women still face in the industry, female directors — like DaCosta — have it harder than their male counterparts. 


“It’s not necessarily overtly racist, but it is shocking the way people have talked to me in my position as a director," DaCosta said.

"People who work for me. Especially on a movie like this, where Jordan was the only other person of colour at the level of decision-making on the movie. And that’s unacceptable, frankly.” 

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She also recalled a time when a white male crew member asked her if she was "hooking to make money on the side" after spotting her waiting outside for her assistant one night.

“That happened to me so many times, with people who work above me, who work laterally to me, below me. At the moment, you’re just like: ‘Push on.’ You just deal with it. But in retrospect, I will never do that again,” DaCosta added. 


Nia DaCosta is working with Marvel next. 

DaCosta's success doesn't end with "Candyman." She's currently set to direct "The Marvels,"  which is a sequel to "Captain Marvel."

She'll be making history yet again as the first Black woman to direct a film for Marvel Studios. 

In light of commemorating her success, a discussion needs to take place: Why aren't Black female directors being celebrated the way they deserve to be?


Greta Gerwig and Patty Jenkins both had their names proudly slapped across headlines praising them for breaking glass ceilings — shouldn't DaCosta be receiving the same treatment too?

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Yona Dervishi is a writer who is currently working at YourTango as an editorial intern. She covers topics pertaining to radical acceptance, news, and entertainment.