After a two year break from the franchise, Taika Waititi is returning to write and direct another entry into the Thor franchise. Chris Hemsworth is presumed to be reprising his role as the Asgardian god of thunder.
His last entry into the franchise, 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok, was a hit and brought much-needed energy into the MCU. While this news may be uplifting to Marvel fans, it’s disheartening for fans of the Japanese manga, Akira. Waititi’s new Thor project will have a big effect on Warner Bros.’ Akira adaptation and could prolong a project that’s already been extremely stagnant.
The Akira adaptation was scheduled for a May 21, 2021 release and had Waititi testing for actors. Currently, the project is being put on hold indefinitely as both Akira and the fourth installment in the Thor franchise have similar production dates. Script development concerns had already caused Akira to push back its shooting start and even though some of those concerns have been addressed, the production dates are now too close.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, sources have said that Warner Bros.’ is keen on keeping Waititi involved for the long-term and hopes that he’ll pick up Akira after Thor 4.
Waititi managed to revive the character of Thor with Ragnarok, where he managed to bring a sense of wit and flavor to a character and a series of films that most people had already written off. The film earned almost $854 million worldwide and managed to produce a 93% on Rotten Tomatoes.
Waititi’s unique sense of humor and charm is infused throughout most of his movies, such as What We Do in the Shadows and Hunt for the Wilderpeople. Waititi’s next film is Jojo Rabbit, a Holocaust drama that he directed for Fox Searchlight, which opens Oct. 18. The film is about a young boy in Hitler’s army who finds out that his mother is hiding a Jewish girl in their home. Scarlett Johansson stars in the picture and Waititi will be portraying his own unique take on Adolf Hitler.