By Nick Schager
Following his Hunt for the Wilderpeople, New Zealand director Taika Waititi is moving up to the intergalactic big leagues with next year’s Thor: Ragnarok, the third solo outing for Marvel’s Norse God of Flowing Blonde Locks — although “solo” is a relative term in this case, given that Chris Hemsworth’s hero will be accompanied by Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk, Anthony Hopkins’ Odin, Jeff Goldblum’s Grandmaster, Idris Elba’s Heimdall, Karl Urban’s Skurge, and Cate Blanchett’s Hela. If Waititi’s tongue-in-cheek Comic-Con video about what Thor was up to while his Marvel cohorts were duking it out in Captain America: Civil War (watch it above) is any indication, the three-quel shapes up to be a more freewheeling take on the superhero. And in Waititi’s recent Reddit Ask Me Anything chat, the filmmaker gives us more reason to expect his film will take some unique turns with his claim he’s doing his best to ignore the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the two previous Thor films.
In answers to separate questions, Waititi said that “I made an effort to ignore the fact there are other Thor films,” and “I’m trying to ignore the rest of the universe and just make my own awesome movie.” In answering another question about humor in the film, he replied that “You can expect a Taika-esque tone. They’ve been very accepting of my style.”
Moreover, he predicts that Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner is going to be the breakout character in Thor: Ragnarok, and that he and his creative team took special pains to make sure that, unlike in the prior two series movies, Hemsworth’s Thor won’t be overshadowed by Tom Hiddleston’s Loki. “Thor is awesome now,” Waititi assured readers. And when asked to comment on Marvel president Kevin Feige’s belief that Ragnarok will be the Winter Soldier of the MCU’s “Phase 3,” Waititi shares a realization: “Jeez. I better see Winter Soldier… no joke.”
From the sounds of Waititi’s Reddit conversation, Thor: Ragnarok will be infused with the spirit that defined the filmmaker’s What We Do in the Shadows and Hunt for the WIlderpeople. To read his entire thoughts on his contribution to the MCU — including why frequent collaborator Jemaine Clement would make a terrible Thanos, and why Ragnarok’s logo boasts a distinctly ’80s style — click over to Reddit to read the full AMA.
Thor: Ragnarok hammers into theaters on Nov. 3, 2017.
Taika Waititi’s ‘Hunt for the Wilderpeople’: Watch a clip: