Taika Waititi clarifies plans for Star Wars and Akira
After finally bursting into the mainstream and garnering all of the praise he deserves, Oscar-winner Taika Waititi (Jojo Rabbit) has set himself up to be one of the biggest directors of the next decade and with talks surrounding his long-delayed Akira live-action adaptation and potential Star Wars project, he has opened up about his plans for both.
In an interview with Variety after taking home the golden statue for Best Adapted Screenplay for Jojo, Waititi revealed that he’s aware of the anticipation surrounding him helming a film in a galaxy far, far away, especially since he has already directed an episode of Disney+’s The Mandalorian, but he also has told fans to temper their expectations for the moment.
“I wish there was a better story, I’ll put it that way,” Waititi said. “Are there discussions about the Star Wars film? Like, yeah, I discussed with my friends in 1996 how cool Star Wars was. That’s what they’re going off … I think people see me hanging out with people, especially with Star Wars, and think I’m having some big discussions about it. I would f—ing love to … If it was right. I would want to do any kind of movie if it made sense, and if it felt not like career suicide.”
Following his big budget debut in 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok, which was a critical and commercial smash, Waititi became one of the most sought-after directors in Hollywood, with one of the most impressive projects being Warner Bros’ live-action adaptation of the acclaimed anime Akira. The 44-year-old director signed on to direct the project in 2017 and had scored a 2021 release date, but after signing on to return for Thor: Love and Thunder, he chose to put that on hold until after the fourth installment in the MCU franchise. The film saw an even bigger delay as Waititi chose to direct the upcoming sports biopic dramedy Next Goal Wins prior to Thor, leaving fans wondering when — if ever — the anime adaptation would come to be.
“The whole thing went on hold,” Waititi said. “We had to keep pushing the dates, and it encroached on the Thor dates, which were immovable. So Akira ended up shifting two years down the track … Post-Thor. So I’m not sure if even in two years I’d be — I don’t know what I’m doing in f—ing two days … I think eventually it will happen. I’m just not sure if I’ll be doing it.
Though fans looking forward to Waititi bringing the Katsuhiro Otomo anime to life might be bummed to hear about the indefinite delay, they can at least look forward to Thor: Love and Thunder hitting theaters on November 5, 2021.
(Photo Credit: Backgrid Images)