Taika Waititi to Direct Thor 4, With Akira on Hold!
In breaking news, The Hollywood Reporter brings word that Taika Waititi is returning to the Marvel Studios fold to direct Thor 4, the followup to his wildly successful 2017 sequel Thor: Ragnarok! However, due to conflicting dates with the superhero film, Waititi’s plans to direct Warner Bros. live-action adaptation of Akira have been pushed back until after Thor 4 is complete. Expect more word about Thor 4 to emerge from San Diego Comic-Con this weekend!
Thor: Ragnarok was a hit with critics and fans alike, taking the franchise in a more overtly comedic direction to the tune of over $854 million worldwide. Even legendary filmmaker Quentin Tarantino recently hailed Ragnarok as “drastically my favorite” MCU movie. It fair speculation that the film will re-team Chris Hemsworth with his Valkyrie and Men in Black International co-star Tessa Thompson, and could possibly play off events of Avengers: Endgame which saw The God of Thunder teaming up with the Guardians of the Galaxy. Thompson told the LA Times in April that the plan was for Waititi to return.
As for the director’s adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo’s classic manga and anime film Akira, a May 21, 2021 release date has now been pushed back indefinitely. Waititi was in the process of testing actors from around the world to star in the picture, which he previously hoped to cast with Asian teenage leads. Unfortunately script issues forced the project into rewrites to address certain concerns, and with some of them yet to be addressed the filmmaker is moving ahead to Thor 4. Warners still hopes to retain him to start work on the long-gestating Akira after the Marvel sequel is complete.
Waititi’s busy schedule also includes plans to write/direct a Time Bandits TV pilot for Apple TV+, as well as the episode of Star Wars series The Mandalorian he completed for Disney Plus. Waititi also has the WWII dramedy Jojo Rabbit (in which he also plays the role of Adolf Hitler) finished for release by Fox Searchlight on October 18, 2019. He is also helping Fox develop an animated version of the comic strip Flash Gordon.