Marvel’s Taika Waititi Confirms This Character Is Coming Back for ‘Thor: Love and Thunder’
Since Taika Waititi is returning to direct, it only makes sense that his character Korg will be back as well. But the reaction to that news on Jimmy Kimmel Live seemed to surprise even him.
Waititi gives an update on ‘Love and Thunder’
Having announced Thor: Love and Thunder to much fanfare at Comic-Con a few months ago, Waititi appeared on Kimmel, who asked him how the fourth Thor was progressing. He said he had “finished a couple of drafts” of the story, so it sounds like he’s making progress.
He also told Kimmel there would be two Thors: Chris Hemsworth and Portman, who would become what Waititi called a “female version” of Thor. This seemed to contradict the comments that the director had made previously about not calling her the female Thor. Here’s exactly what he told Entertainment Tonight in August.
‘[She’s] a Thor. There’s still the other Thor, the original Thor (Hemsworth),” explained the New Zealand filmmaker. “She’s not called Female Thor. In the comics, she’s called the Mighty Thor. I couldn’t be more happy and excited by how it’s panning out.”
If we pick apart what the director said, we’ll be getting into a battle of semantics. We’ll just go with Portman playing a new Thor. Nice and simple.
From Korg to Hitler
When Waititi said that Korg would be back in Love and Thunder the audience at Kimmel cheered wildly, which made Waititi’s eyes swell to the size of golf balls. “Thank you so much for that reaction,” he said rather incredulously. Kimmel deadpanned in response, “If you guys like Thor, wait till you see Hitler!”
Kimmel was referring to Jojo Rabbit, Waititi’s new movie, which is opening in limited release. It’s about a young boy in the Hitler Youth who finds out his mother Is hiding a Jewish girl in their home. Waititi himself plays arguably history’s most loathed figure with a comic spin – an angle that Hollywood executives wanted nothing to do with when they first heard the idea.
“I learned very early on when I was writing the script that there’s no way to pitch this movie,” Waititi said. When he tried, he was told, “Stop. Not interested.”
So Waititi went ahead and wrote the whole screenplay and shopped it around, finally finding a taker in Fox Searchlight. Ironically, that company is now owned by Disney, who also paid the bills on Thor: Ragnarok. Searchlight told him they would make the film only if Waititi himself would play Hitler.
Fair enough, Waititi figured, given that asking any other actor to play Hitler would be a very tough sell, both before and after the fact. “It would then become the Will Smith Hitler film,” Waititi said.
Just let that image roll around in your head for awhile.
How do people like ‘Jojo Rabbit?’
Luckily for Waititi, the movie has been positively received so far. It has an 80% on Rotten Tomatoes, with the critical consensus being “Jojo Rabbit‘s blend of irreverent humor and serious ideas definitely won’t be to everyone’s taste — but either way, this anti-hate satire is audacious to a fault.”
Jojo Rabbit ties into the Marvel Cinematic Universe in more ways than one. Scarlett Johansson plays a supporting role as the Hitler follower’s mother who does not share his beliefs in Nazism. Peter Travers of Rolling Stone praised the movie on the whole and said “Rosie (is) beautifully played by Scarlett Johansson in a performance of uncommon complexity and feeling.”
Not everyone is sold. AA Dowd of the AV Club wrote, “rue satire challenges and provokes. This one offers free hugs.” Some viewers will probably take it.