Taika Waititi has always been a director to watch out for in Hollywood, and with the release of Thor: Ragnarok, everyone is paying attention. Best known for his comedic chops and emphasis on improvisation, Waititi has made a considerable impact on the MCU by making the most unique film he knew he could.
When speaking with MTV during San Diego Comic-Con, Waititi was asked about his process working in the studio system. Waititi professed that he wanted to implement a ” very loose and collaborative mood” on the film’s set.
“Why come to work and stress out? I’m trying to bring my tone and sensibility from my other films.”
Waititi encouraged his actors to play music on set, dance, and improvise as much as they could. With regards to how much improv is in the film, Waititi stated that about “80% of the film was improvised”.
Waititi’s loose and unrestrictive mood is likely one of the reasons Marvel hired him, and the footage speaks for itself as Ragnarok has some energy injected into it. In fact, star Mark Ruffalo was concerned about Waititi’s creativity and energy.
“Mark Ruffalo would be finished shooting for the day and he’d come up to me and he’d be like, ‘Why have we not been fired yet? We are doing the most insane stuff in this film, so where’s the phone call?’”
Waititi further commented on his work ethic and how he would enforce improvisation on set.
“My style of working is I’ll often be behind the camera, or right next to the camera yelling words at people, like, ‘Say this, say this! Say it this way!’ I’ll straight-up give Anthony Hopkins a line reading. I don’t care.”
Many directors would be terrified of giving a line reading to the legendary Anthony Hopkins, but Waititi is adamant that this tone with his actors will lead to a better film.
Thor: Ragnarok stars Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Cate Blanchett, Tom Hiddleston, Tessa Thompson, Idris Elba, Karl Urban, Anthony Hopkins, and Jeff Goldblum.
Imprisoned on the other side of the universe, the mighty Thor (Chris Hemsworth) finds himself in a deadly gladiatorial contest that pits him against the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), his former ally and fellow Avenger. Thor’s quest for survival leads him in a race against time to prevent the all-powerful Hela (Cate Blanchett) from destroying his home world and the Asgardian civilization.
Thor: Ragnarok hits theaters November 3, 2017.