Taika Waititi has made a name for himself directing a small handful of indie movies like What We Do in the Shadows and Hunt for the Wilderpeople. Since then, he’s become one of the most sought out talents. Not only did he direct Thor: Ragnarok, which is easily the best Thor film of the three, but he will be directing Jojo Rabbit, a dark historical satire about a how a young boy in Hitler’s army’s life is turned upside down when he discovers that his mother is hiding a Jewish girl from the Nazis. Waititi will be playing Hitler. He’ll also be one of the voices in Disney+’s The Mandalorian.
But now Waititi will be working on a new project. According to reports, he is setting his sights on “cracking” the story for an animated Flash Gordon project at Disney. More on the story below.
Deadline says that Waititi could possibly write and direct the animated Flash Gordon. However, there are not enough details to confirm he would take on either responsibility. That being said, another project with Waititi’s name attached to it is enough to garner some attention. He’s certainly come a long way since he was one of the co-stars in the otherwise forgettable Green Lantern.
Waititi is currently busy working on post-production for Jojo Rabbit, which is set for a release later this fall. A season that is generally reserved for awards contenders. We’ll just have to wait and see how that pans out.
The New Zealand filmmaker also had to pull himself out of Netflix’s newest stop-motion animated project, Bubbles, a pic about Michael Jackson’s pet monkey. The project may have been affected by HBO’s Leaving Neverland, a documentary about two of Michael Jackson’s accusers. So maybe this will give him the time he needs to be working on Flash Gordon. But let’s not forget that he is also attached to direct a live-action Akira over at WB.
As for Flash Gordon, the character started out as the hero of a space opera comic strip that was first published in 1934. It follows our hero who protects Earth when it is threatened by a collision with the planet Mongo. During his quest, he’s pitted against Mongo’s tyrannical ruler Ming the Merciless.
Though the project was initially set up over at Fox, the studio has since been absorbed by Disney. And while the Mouse House has dropped a few projects, they have also kept some on. So with Waititi having already worked with Disney on one of their Marvel Studios films, it seems to make sense for them to go back to him.
Serving as a source of inspiration to some of the great space adventures of today, many have attempted to bring the Flash Gordon hero to the big screen. But none succeeded. There was the 1988 live-action film that earned a cult following but never the box office success.
So maybe an animated approach will be the best approach for the project that started out as a comic. We will just have to wait and see.