A few weeks ago, we learned that Taika Waititi's next project is a strange little movie by the name of Jojo Rabbit, which will feature Waititi himself playing a young German boy's imaginary friend ... who also just so happens to be Adolf Hitler. Yes, the Adolf Hitler. You heard me correctly.
In the wake of this news, we got our hands on a copy of Waititi's Jojo Rabbit screenplay, and lemme tell ya: you folks are not ready for this movie. What Waititi's done with this script is nothing less than a breathtaking tightrope act, a timely work of satire that comes right up to the line of good taste ... without ever truly crossing it.
Oh, make no mistake - there will be Hot Takes™ in the wake of Jojo Rabbit's release. But given Waititi's past work (which manages to blend drama, comedy and potentially uncomfortable material with surgical precision), we're confident he'll get to the end of that tightrope without injuring himself. Or, y'know, the career he's worked so hard to build.
Anyway, here's some new JoJo Rabbit casting news:
"Scarlett Johansson is in final negotiations to star in Fox Searchlight’s World War II film Jojo Rabbit, sources tell Variety.
The project is Taika Waititi’s follow-up to Thor: Ragnarok, and is set during World War II and centers on a young German boy who finds out that his mother, to be played by Johansson, is hiding a Jewish girl in their home."
That's right: Taika Waititi has dipped back into the MCU to cast one of Jojo Rabbit's biggest roles, and holy moly is Johansson a great choice for the part. It's true that the film centers almost completely around the titular little boy and the complicated relationship he establishes with the young Jewish girl hiding in his attic, but Jojo's mother plays a key part in the proceedings, as well.
On a related note - casting the right young man for Jojo will be fundamental in pulling this thing off, but that's yet another area Waititi's proven himself adept in (see also: Hunt For The Wilderpeople). That casting process is apparently underway as we speak, and we expect the role will be filled by a complete unknown.
We're very excited about this project and can't wait to learn more. Stay tuned for further Jojo Rabbit updates as they roll in. In the meantime: have any of you read the screenplay? Without drifting into spoiler territory: how'd you feel about it? Think it'll go over well with viewers? Not so much? Sound off in the comments below.
(Note: Header photo by Gage Skidmore used with permission via Flickr)