Up until now, Taika Waititi has been know as the director of such independent gems as What We Do In The Shadows and Hunt for the Wilderpeople. While both are pretty funny, and have a lot going on, neither is admittedly on the same scale of scope as a project like Thor: Ragnarok. Such a jump in projects can be daunting to even the most experienced director, and in the case of Waititi, he had two really good reasons for making the leap: he wanted to work with Chris Hemsworth, and the change of pace excites him.
A recent interview with The Digital Spy saw Taika Waititi in high spirits, chatting about the currently on-going production of Thor: Ragnarok. The film is apparently halfway through its shoot, and it's all coming together, which is probably the opposite of what you'd expect to hear from a director on this first big budget franchise film. The key to Waititi's easy adjustment is probably his enthusiasm, as he chose the project specifically with the following reasons in mind:
I always want to do something different when I make something. I really like the idea of doing something really big. My films have always been a lot smaller. I like the kind of films I make but [Thor: Ragnarok] was an opportunity that presented itself that wouldn't come around often, so I thought I would just pursue. Also, I know Chris [Hemsworth] and wanted to work with him at some point. Again, it seemed like a good opportunity.
Taika Waititi and Chris Hemsworth have been in each other's orbit for quite a while, as Hemsworth was initially impressed by Taika's work on the film Boy, and the two eventually built a friendship that lead them to finally team up for Thor: Ragnarok. The way the two men talk about each other only solidifies the fact that a collaboration was destined to happen. So if anything, it feels like the bigger factor in Waititi's decision to help Thor: Ragnarok was the opportunity to play in a bigger sandbox. Looking at his recent film, Hunt for the Wilderpeople, it almost feels like he's been consciously working towards the kind of work he's now doing on his Australia set.
Much like Thor himself, Taika Waititi's journey to Thor: Ragnarok has been epic and well fought. With an unshakable confidence, and an eager collaborator by his side, it feels like the third installment of the Odinson's trilogy is going to be the best one yet. We'll find out soon enough, as Thor: Ragnarok is set for November 3, 2017, which is relatively soon when compared to other Marvel projects like Captain Marvel.