Taika Waititi Gets Involved With FLASH GORDON Animated Film


It looks like Disney and Fox finally figured out how to reboot Flash Gordon: Deadline reports that the studios have brought in Taika Waititi to take a "crack" at an animated film based on the classic comic strip. While the report asserts that Waititi is signing on to write and direct the project, that doesn't seem entirely likely given the filmmaker's involvement with Akira; Waititi's reps made it clear that it's a little too early to know exactly how involved he'll be with Flash Gordon. At the very least, Waititi will help develop a story for the film. 

Hiring Waititi is kind of an obvious play for a few reasons: He was recently attached to direct another animated movie – Bubbles, Netflix's stop-motion animated film based on the life of Michael Jackson's pet chimpanzee. Waititi exited the project due to scheduling conflicts with Akira, and the likelihood of Bubbles ever getting made is practically nil in the wake of the sexual abuse allegations revealed in HBO's Leaving Neverland. Then there's Waititi's Thor: Ragnarok, which elicited comparisons to the Flash Gordon movie from 1980. And with the primary antagonist of Flash Gordon being Ming the Merciless, a character rooted in racist stereotypes, the studios will need to find a filmmaker with a creative approach for the character that skirts/subverts those stereotypes – between Waititi's involvement with Akira (another potentially problematic adaptation) and his upcoming film Jojo Rabbit (in which Waititi plays Adolf Hitler), he seems like that somebody. 

Sure, Waititi is an obvious pick (he's the obvious pick for everything right now, and why not), but his involvement in this animated Flash Gordon reboot is the first time I've given a crap about a Flash Gordon reboot. That's something. For what it's worth, Waititi is getting close to Guillermo del Toro and Martin Scorsese-levels of "projects in development," so until this one becomes a little more official, I'm not holding my breath too hard.