Marvel Studios

Marvel movie fans notoriously take the material seriously, but the same can’t be said for Taika Waititi.

Waititi was a relative unknown when he was given the directing job on 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok. His offbeat sensibilities revitalized the character, and audiences responded to the tune of a franchise best $850 million worldwide.

The movie also earned a 93% from the ratings aggregator Rotten Tomatoes.

But the same offbeat sensibilities went too far for some with his Ragnarok follow-up, 2022’s Thor: Love and Thunder. The movie misfired with fans and critics, but apparently Waititi couldn’t care less.

In an appearance on Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes and Will Arnett‘s Smartless podcast, Jojo Rabbit Oscar winner Waititi said the movies were just a paycheck for him.

“You know what? I had no interest in doing one of those films,” Waititi said. “But I was poor and I’d just had a second child, and I thought, ‘You know what, this would be a great opportunity to feed these children.'”

He added, “Thor, let’s face it — it was probably the least popular franchise. I never read Thor comics as a kid. That was the comic I’d pick up and be like ‘Ugh.'”

He said, “I think there was no place left for [Marvel] to go with that [character],” so he figured when he got called in, “this is really the bottom of the barrel.”

That said, Waititi said of Marvel, “I love working with them. I love Chris [Hemsworth].”

He won’t be directing a fifth Thor movie, if there is one. “We’re in an open relationship, and it’s like if they want to see other people, I’m happy for that,” Taika said. “I’d still get back into bed with them one day.”

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