Taika Waititi is now officially set to become one of the few directors to return for a second at-bat in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. According to THR, the Kiwi wunderkind has signed a deal to write and direct the fourth movie in the Thor sub-series, bringing his personal touch to the franchise once more.
This news comes less than two months after Waititi's Akira remake got a May 2021 release date, and it also comes at the expense of that project. Warner Bros. has put Akira "on pause indefinitely," due in part to clashes with Thor, but also reportedly due to script issues. THR says the studio is still interested in having Waititi direct, so it may simply be delayed until after his Thor obligations are complete. One assumes, then, that Thor 4 will likely release within the next couple of years.
Thor: Ragnarok, of course, is widely considered among the best Marvel Cinematic Universe films, and its success is largely attributed to Waititi's input as co-writer and director. Not only does it bear the quirky sense of humour also found in the likes of Hunt for the Wilderpeople and What We Do In The Shadows, it's got a hefty subtext concerning colonialism that reflects Waititi's Maori heritage. Another film pairing him with the under-utilised comic gifts of Chris Hemsworth and the increasingly strange Marvel cosmos should be as much of delight as Marvel movies can be - especially given how much Waititi's specific weirdness was celebrated last time.
Waititi now seems firmly ensconced in the world of blockbusters, between the two Thor movies (and a cameo in Avengers: Endgame), Akira, and an episode of the Disney+ Star Wars show The Mandalorian. He's also got his own project Jojo Rabbit opening this October, however, which looks like a return to the more idiosyncratic form that made the film world fall in love with him pre-Marvel. Though Thor: Ragnarok bears far more personal a stamp than most Marvel movies, there's only so far you can go with those big franchise pictures, and one hopes Waititi uses his additional clout to get his weird passion projects made.
At this point, I'd ask how you feel about this, and tell you to sound off in the comments. But in this case, I already know you're into it.