Taika Waititi's Star Wars movie has been in development for some time now though the plot and details remain a mystery.
From the moment someone first floated the idea of a Taika Waititi Star Wars movie, fans were all in. How could they not be after the disaster that was the final three films of the Star Wars Skywalker saga? After all, Waititi has given us such films like Thor: Ragnarok, JoJo Rabbit, and his latest (a rare misfire), Thor: Love and Thunder, as well as TV series like What We Do in the Shadows (based on his movie) while directing episodes on series such as The Mandalorian and Flight of the Conchords. The dude is a machine.
So when can we see Taika Waititi’s new Star Wars movie already and what will this movie be about? What else do we know? Let’s get into it.
Kathleen Kennedy Says Taika Waititi Is Writing and Directing A Star Wars Movie
Contrary to earlier reports, and according to Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy, Taika Waititi is handling both the writing and directing duties of his untitled Star Wars film. Earlier we reported that Waititi was in cahoots with Scottish scribe Krysty Wilson-Cairns co-penning the script for the highly anticipated film. But now, Kennedy says that isn’t so as she offered an update on Waititi’s progress while speaking with Variety.
“Taika is still working away,” Kennedy explained. “He’s writing the script himself. He doesn’t really want to bring others into that process and I don’t blame him. He has a very, very unique voice. So we want to protect that and that’s what he’s doing. But we’re going to make that one day.”
Now, that doesn’t mean those earlier reports were without merit. Those two easily could have been knocking ideas around together and why not. Wilson-Cairns is a highly respected scribe whose credits include the war drama 1917, for which she received a BAFTA award for Outstanding British Film of the Year as well as an Academy Award nomination for, and most recently she co-wrote the Edgar Winter thriller, Last Night in Soho.
In fact, the report that Wilson-Cairns was working with Waititi on the script seems to ring true as she had been asked about the progress being made but couldn’t offer any update.
“I cannot tell you anything, I’m so sorry,” she explained to IndieWire. “I don’t know much. I’m working away in a bunch of projects and I find out what I find out, and I believe if I tell anyone, they’ll come to my house and kill me, and maybe my dog as well, which, I love my dog. He’s got to live!”
Now that Kennedy had offered her own update, it appears that Waititi has chosen to go about writing the story on his own. As you may already know, Waititi is no newcomer to Star Wars. He voiced IG-11 (a droid bounty hunter) during season one of The Mandalorian. He was nominated for an Emmy for his voice work in the role. He also directed the first episode of season one of the series.
Some have guessed that The Mandalorian may become a space for testing new voices to work in the franchise. Deborah Chow was the first woman to direct in the Star Wars universe and is now working on the upcoming Obi-Wan Kenobi series.
The talk surrounding Waititi and a Star Wars movie has been ongoing for some time now, going back as far as January 2020. In July 2020, he confirmed the script was being actively written. It wasn’t until November 2020 that the Star Wars official Twitter account confirmed the Waititi movie was happening. Taika Waititi joked on Instagram, “What?? Ugh, as a longtime fan of Star Wars, I’m so angry about what I’m about to do to ruin it.”
Taika Waititi Might Have Already Filmed Some Scenes
As we are already well into 2023, it may not come as a surprise that Waititi may have already shot some footage for his Star Wars film. What may surprise you is that this footage was shot back in December 2020. It is said that three days of filming happened that month in Scotland’s Highlands.
A small crew was sent to gather footage, but apparently, Taika Waititi was not there to film any of it. We won’t know if the footage was truly shot for the movie, or if so, it will make the final cut until the film hits theaters.
The Taika Waititi Star Wars Movie Plot Is A Mystery
What do we know so far about the story of Taika Waititi’s Star Wars movie? Basically nothing. While we know that the team is working on the script, we don’t know if it’s done. They haven’t given us any guesses on what it could be about, and it’s hard to make guesses based on what we do know.
So far, we know that Lucasfilm has completed the Skywalker saga, so it shouldn’t be part of that. We’ve also seen how Taika Waititi approached Thor: Ragnarok and, for better or worse, Thor: Love and Thunder, from a new angle for the Marvel universe.
While the entire movie is not necessarily using the footage being collected in Scotland in December, this information does suggest that part of the movie will take place somewhere cold. Could we be revisiting Hoth, the ice planet? Or possibly Ilum? The First Order took over the Jedi stronghold in the Starwalker saga.
Realistically, Taika Waititi could just as well be creating an entirely new location of his own. Three days of collecting footage could also mean we only see some ice-covered landscapes for as much as three seconds in the film. Still, this is our first peek at what Taika Waititi and his team are up to.
Taika Waititi Star Wars Movie Might Not Come Until 2025
It won’t be the next Star Wars movie you see. There are a lot of Star Wars projects in production right now, and with how the pandemic slowed things down, timelines have become even more difficult to predict.
We aren’t even completely sure exactly what the next Star Wars film will be, though we do know there are at least three in development. Make that four with Waititi’s film.
After the 2023 Star Wars Celebration in London, Kennedy spoke with Variety to explain the Star Wars projects currently in play. Of course, one of the biggest announcements to come from that was Daisy Ridley returning to Star Wars and reprising her role as Rey.
Kennedy spoke about where we pick up Rey on her journey. “Well, we’re 15 years out from Rise of Skywalker,” she told IGN, “so we’re post-war, post-First Order, and the Jedi are in disarray, and there’s a lot of discussion around who are the Jedi, what are they doing, what’s the state of the galaxy? And she’s attempting to rebuild the Jedi Order based on the books, based on what she promised Luke. So that’s where we’re going.”
Rey’s new story will be directed by Academy Award- and Emmy Award-winning director Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy. Then there is the massive Mandalorian event that is being put together by Dave Filoni, and finally, a James Mangold Star Wars film that reportedly will take fans back to the dawn of the Jedi. So, what about Waititi’s film?
The news on that is Waititi hopes to go in front of the cameras next year. There is no official start date, but fans are hoping sooner rather than later. This would mean, if he got started in mid-2024, that we could possibly get his film by Christmas time, 2025. Of course, this is all guesswork.
One of the many contributing factors that could hinder Waititi’s Star Wars is the simple fact that he is in such demand and his plate is immensely full. He has no less than eight projects lined up, including his Star Wars film and Next Goal Wins, a film that premieres later this year. He is writing a number of scripts and also finds himself on the producing end of numerous projects including the hit TV comedy series, What We Do in the Shadows.
He Wants To Create An All-New Star Wars Story
Although Taika Waititi has been fairly light on the details of his upcoming untitled Star Wars film, (he has, after all, been quite busy with a little thing called Thor: Love and Thunder while also serving as producer on the hit FX series, What We Do in the Shadows) Waititi did open up just a teeny bit recently to let Star Wars fans know exactly where his Star Wars was not going to go.
During his jaunt across the country to promote his new Marvel masterpiece, Waititi spoke on Star Wars and it didn’t appear as if the prolific director, writer, and occasional actor was joking when he claimed to have zero interest in resurrecting any old Star Wars characters. Is this a good thing? Waititi believes it is.
“Look, I think for the Star Wars universe to expand, it has to expand,” Waititi said to Total Film. I don’t think that I’m any use in the Star Wars universe making a film where everyone’s like, ‘Oh great, well that’s the blueprints to the Millennium Falcon. Ah that’s Chewbacca’s grandmother.’ That all stands alone,” he shared.
Waititi was echoing the sentiments of Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy when she didn’t mince her words when she told Total Film via Games Radar, “We need to create a whole new saga. That takes a lot. There’s a lot of conversation around that.”
Kennedy was obviously talking about what comes next for the film franchise after seeing the success Star Wars has seen with their series such as The Mandalorian, The Book of Boba Fett, and the recently released Obi-Wan Kenobi.
But Star Wars fans were reluctant to get behind Kennedy, many calling for her firing after they feel she blundered the final three films in the Skywalker Saga. But Waititi has his own plans for the direction of Star Wars.
“I would like to take something new and create some new characters and just expand the world. Otherwise, it feels like it’s a very small story.” Of course, Waititi is no stranger to the Star Wars universe. He was a big part of The Mandalorian, having directed the season one finale and he has also voiced the role of the bounty hunter droid IG-II.
Taika Waititi Joked About Jar Jar Binks Returning To The Franchise
Taika Waititi joked earlier when asked about his plans for this Star Wars movie about whether we would see Luke Skywalker again, or if the dreaded Jar Jar Binks could be making a return to the franchise. It was on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and the director played coy with the plot of the film.
To his credit, Taika Waititi said that bringing back Star Wars with a Jar Jar Binks story would be tantamount to ruining the flick, so credit where credit is due there. But we still weren’t able to glean a ton of information from this interview which has been the case with the writer and director. Still, with all his past success, we simply can’t wait to see what he has in store for Star Wars fans.