Taika Waititi has had the privilege of working in two major Disney franchises as of late, which is something few directors can claim. With that said, Waititi revealed that while management may be the same, directing a Marvel project is "very different" from directing in the world of Star Wars. When talking about his experience with Jon Favreau's upcoming live-action series The Mandalorian, Waititi shared that things were a bit more rigid:
You know that Star Wars, you know, is just very different to the Marvel style. They know that whatever was set up in the tone of the first films really should be kind of adhered to and that's what the fans like and you can't really disrespect it, I guess, is a nice way of saying it. Can't have too many jokes, but there's a little bit. Definitely my tone is in there, with the dialogue and stuff like that.
It sounds like Taika Waititi couldn't direct as fast and loose with The Mandalorian as he did in Thor: Ragnarok. The good news is Waititi did confirm at TCA (via Gamespot) that audiences will still get some of the director's style in his episode, but maybe not as much as he would've liked. Considering how well Thor: Ragnarok did with audiences, some may be disappointed the Star Wars top brass didn't let him spread his wings.
Of course, there's a couple logical reasons why Taika Waititi had to be somewhat restrained in his contribution to The Mandalorian. For starters, he's not the only high-profile director working on episodes, so going too hard with his vision and style may have caused tonal issues across the full season. Even if that wasn't an issue, there's the certain expectation that Waititi mentioned that all contributions to Star Wars stick to the tone of the original trilogy.
Plus, the Star Wars universe has a rigid set of rules and canon that, typically, Disney likes to honor. As perhaps evidenced by the drama that led up to Solo: A Star Wars Story, this discourages a lot of improv from happening, lest a line that dishonors or changes canon unwittingly slips through. Taika Waititi's extensive use of improv in Thor: Ragnarok is well-documented, so perhaps he may have tried something similar during The Mandalorian, and was shot down.
The Mandalorian is headed to Disney+, and will be the first of two announced live-action Star Wars adventures on the platform. Keep an eye on CinemaBlend as more details on the series and the upcoming streaming service surface, and be sure to visit and bookmark our midseason premiere guide for a look at what's coming to television in 2019. Our Netflix premiere schedule is worth checking out as well.