When it comes to the Thor movies, Marvel has gone after interesting director choices. Kenneth Branagh helped bring the God of Thunder to the big screen in 2011, adding his Shakespearean sensibilities to the film. With Thor: The Dark World, Marvel originally tapped Patty Jenkins to direct (now the director for DC’s Wonder Woman) but the usual “creative differences” got in the way, bringing in director Alan Taylor of Game of Thrones fame at the helm.
Marvel has been known for considering and hiring directors that do not necessarily fit the role of “action directors” for they have aimed for filmmakers that would focus on telling the best story they can, with the action set-pieces only to follow. This formula has worked with Anthony and Joe Russo in particular, having directed mostly sitcom episodes before landing the job to direct Captain America: The Winter Soldier and of course, Civil War.
Now, when Taika Waititi was brought on to direct Thor: Ragnarok, many fans were caught by surprise by the name. Waititi had previously directed the horror mockumentary What We Do in the Shadows and has a new New Zealand film, Hunt for the Wilderpeople. In an interview with Bmag, Waititi talked about taking on the job:
If you ask the fans, they’ve got no idea why Marvel asked me to do it. I’m absolutely an outside choice for them. Which is good! That’s why I think they do so well. They just keep choosing weird people to make their movies. I think it’s great. It’s awesome. It’s a genius move, really. Why would you get the obvious choice?
It’s like when Hollywood sees a movie that does really well and then they copy that movie. If you’re trying to get someone to make a certain film, you don’t get someone who made the last film that was like your film that you’re trying to make. Because you’re going to get the same film, and it’s going to be boring, and everybody’s going to see how boring it is.
You should get someone who’s really weird, like me, who’s never made one of these things before. And then you guide them and shape them and make sure they don’t spend all the money on leather jackets.
Thor: Ragnarok comes to theaters November 3, 2017.