Taika Waititi has revealed that he initially had “no interest” in directing 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok for Marvel.
On Monday’s episode of the Smartless podcast, with hosts Jason Bateman, Will Arnett and Sean Hayes, the filmmaker opened up about how he ended up helming two Thor movies, including 2022’s Thor: Love and Thunder, for the superhero franchise.
“You know what? I had no interest in doing one of those films,” Waititi said. “It wasn’t on my plan for my career as an auteur. But I was poor and I’d just had a second child, and I thought, ‘You know what, this would be a great opportunity to feed these children.’”
He added, “And Thor, let’s face it — it was probably like the least popular franchise. I never read Thor comics when I was a kid. That was the comic I’d pick up and be like, ‘Ugh.’ And then I did some research on it, and I read one Thor comic or 18 pages, or however long they are. I was still baffled by this character.”
Later during the conversation, Waititi said he feels like he was asked to direct the Thor films because “there was no place left for them to go with that. I thought, ‘Well, if they’ve called me in, this is really the bottom of the barrel,’” adding that fans initially “hated that I … signed on for the first one.”
The Next Goal Wins director’s comments come after he told Business Insider earlier this month that he has no plans to return to the Thor franchise anytime soon.
“I’m going to concentrate on these other films that I’ve signed on for,” Waititi said, noting that he’s going to be busy for several years working on other projects and that he’d “imagine another Thor would be a lot sooner than that.”
Though he said he still loves Marvel and “working with them,” he wishes them nothing but the best if they move forward with another Thor installment without him.
“I would never feel like they are cheating on me,” Waititi added. “We’re in an open relationship, and it’s like if they want to see other people, I’m happy for that. I’d still get back into bed with them one day.”