In a candid revelation that has taken the film industry by surprise, Taika Waititi, the acclaimed director known for his unique storytelling style, has admitted that his decision to direct Thor: Ragnarok was primarily motivated by financial reasons. This unexpected disclosure came during Waititi’s appearance on the SmartLess podcast, where he engaged in a frank discussion with hosts Will Arnett, Jason Bateman, and Sean Hayes.
Waititi, who has carved a niche for himself in the realm of cinema with his distinct blend of humour and pathos, confessed that he had no initial interest in helming a Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) film. His decision to take on Thor: Ragnarok was influenced by his financial situation at the time, especially following the birth of his second child.
A Surprising Admission From Taika Waititi
Financial Motivations Behind the Choice
During the podcast, Waititi revealed, “I had no interest in doing one of those films. It wasn’t on my plan for my career as an auteur. But I was poor and I’d just had a second child, and I thought, ‘You know what, this would be a great opportunity to feed these children.'” This statement sheds light on the often-unspoken financial considerations that influence the decisions of even the most artistically driven filmmakers.
The Least Popular Franchise
Waititi also shared his initial disinterest in the Thor franchise, considering it to be one of the least popular within the MCU. He mentioned, “I never read Thor comics as a kid. That was the comic I’d pick up and be like ‘Ugh.’ And then I did some research on it, and I read one Thor comic or 18 pages, or however long they are. I was still baffled by this character.”
Impact on the MCU
Transforming Thor: Ragnarok
Despite his initial reluctance, Waititi’s direction of Thor: Ragnarok in 2017 marked a significant turning point for the franchise. The film was highly acclaimed for its fresh approach and became a box office success, grossing $853M worldwide. Waititi’s unique vision brought a new life to the character of Thor, played by Chris Hemsworth, and revitalised the series.
Future with Marvel Studios
Regarding future projects with Marvel Studios, Waititi expressed his intention to focus on other films. He stated, “I’m going to concentrate on these other films that I’ve signed on for,” indicating a shift away from the superhero genre.
Final Thoughts on Taika Waititi’s comments
Taika Waititi’s admission about his financial motivations for directing Thor: Ragnarok offers a rare glimpse into the practical considerations behind artistic choices in Hollywood. His honesty about the decision-making process challenges the often romanticised view of filmmaking, highlighting the realities faced by directors in the industry.
Waititi’s impact on the MCU, however, is undeniable. His approach to Thor: Ragnarok not only redefined the character but also demonstrated how a fresh perspective can breathe new life into a well-established franchise. As he moves on to other projects, his contribution to the MCU remains a testament to his talent and versatility as a filmmaker.
What do you make of this news? What do you make of Taika Waititi’s comments?
You can stream Taika Waititi’s Thor: Ragnarok and Thor: Love And Thunder on Disney Plus right now.