A Lot On His Plate: 6 Future Projects For Taika Waititi
What will we be talking about in the coming years?
Taika Waititi made a lot of media headlines in 2023 with his romantic take on the legendary pirate Blackbeard in David Jenkins' Our Flag Means Death, the split with Marvel, and the new sports comedy Next Goal Wins, which premiered at the end of the year.
Next Goal Wins, starring Michael Fassbender as a coach tasked with turning one of the world's worst soccer teams into an elite squad, received mixed reviews. But the buzz surrounding it showed that the award-winning filmmaker's projects are always of interest to audiences.
So what's next for Taika Waititi now that Next Goal Wins has been released, Our Flag Means Death has been canceled by Max, and there are no Marvel projects on the horizon? Will the writer-actor-director take a break?
As a matter of fact, Waititi has no intention of slowing down in his fast-paced filmmaking career. He currently has at least six new projects in development.
Untitled Star Wars Movie
Probably the most anticipated of Waititi's new films is the Star Wars flick he is making for Disney. That's right, the director has moved from one iconic franchise to another. But the weight of the Star Wars legend and its dedicated fanbase seems to be weighing on the director, as work on the project is going quite slowly.
While it was originally rumored that the film could begin production in 2023, it still seems to be in the writing stage. Fortunately, the studios aren't pressuring Waititi and are giving him creative freedom that could result in something truly special.
Klara and the Sun
Star Wars fans will have to wait a little longer as Waititi's next release will be an adaptation of Kazuo Ishiguro's fan-favorite novel. The project is reportedly set to begin filming in the next few months, with Jenna Ortega rumored to be in talks for the lead role. Sounds like a perfect team-up, right?
Another Waititi project sure to generate buzz is the Apple TV+ series Time Bandits, based on the iconic 1981 film of the same name. While the exact release date is still up in the air, the story of a group of time- and space-traveling dwarf thieves is highly anticipated by many viewers, thanks to the cult status of the original film, the star-studded cast and, of course, Waititi's involvement.
In 2022, Hulu ordered a 10-episode series based on Charle Yu's novel Interior Chinatown. The show will star Jimmy O. Yang as an Asian-American actor struggling to find his voice amid the limitations and stereotypes of Hollywood's portrayal of Asian characters. Waititi is set to direct the pilot, which is expected to premiere sometime in 2024.
In 2019, it was announced that Waititi would direct an animated superhero movie based on Mike Hodges' 1980 space opera Flash Gordon and the comic strip of the same name. Two years later, the film was revealed to be a live action, but no further updates have followed, so the project appears to be in limbo for now.
Another Waititi live-action adaptation that seems to have fallen into production hell is Akira, based on the Japanese dystopian animated film and manga. It was originally slated for a 2021 release, but Waititi's commitment to the Thor franchise put production on hold. Luckily, the filmmaker has stated that he intends to return to the project once he's done with the Star Wars movie. We sure hope that happens soon.