"I wrote a script that I really like and the studio really likes," Hawley said of 20th Century Fox, adding "it needs a little work."
Hawley next directs Jon Hamm and Natalie Portman in sci-fi drama Pale Blue Dot for Fox Searchlight Pictures, which forces him to put a pin in making revisions to Doctor Doom.
"It's hard for me, at this exact moment — because I start shooting another movie in five weeks — to do that work," Hawley said. "So, I mean, my hope is to go back to [Doctor Doom] after [Pale Blue Dot]."
Hawley also points to the looming Disney-Fox deal as a potential road block.
Disney purchased Fox's film and television assets for $52.4 billion in December and, though the deal is not yet completed, the merger would see Disney-owned Marvel Studios win the opportunity to integrate the Fantastic Four and their ancillary characters into its shared Marvel Cinematic Universe — something that could spell doom for Victor Von Doom.
"I know there's also a little uncertainty, given the potential for a Disney merger and the fact that Marvel may regain control of X-Men and Fantastic Four," Hawley said. "They may have a plan of their own in a desk drawer. I just don't know. So, I think there's sort of a sense of uncertainty."
He said again he believes "the studio would like to make it," adding, "I think we're all just trying to figure out how and when we're gonna do that."
The famed Marvel Comics villain and arch foe of Marvel's first family has appeared in all four Fantastic Four movies produced by Fox, but this would mark the metal-fisted dictator's first standalone movie.
Speaking to Observer in March, Hawley said he was intrigued by Doom because of his position as the monarch of fictional Eastern European country Latveria, where Doom rules unchallenged.
"What's interesting to me about Doom's character is he's the king of an Eastern European country and is there a version of this that is more of a political thriller that mixes genre?" Hawley said.
Doctor Doom has yet to reserve a release date.