With Marvel Studios and Lucasfilm (and, soon, 20th Century Fox) all under its corporate umbrella, Disney is the undisputed heavyweight in modern cinema.
Case in point: 2019 will see the release of The Lion King, Avengers: Endgame and Star Wars: Episode IX, three major films that all share the same home. Yes, the Mouse House wields serious box office clout year in, year out, but according to Taika Waititi, director of Thor: Ragnarok, the company is actually more protective of Star Wars when compared to its Marvel properties – likely because the latter has a creative figurehead in the form of Kevin Feige.
Waititi ought to know the difference, too – fresh off Ragnarok, he’s been tasked with helming an episode of The Mandalorian, the first live-action Star Wars TV show in the franchise’s long and decorated history.
Here’s what he had to share:
There’s definitely some of the stuff I’ve learned over the years from working with [Clement] and [Simms] and everyone else back home that I have brought to my episode. But I can’t… It’s a very sacred universe, the Star Wars universe, so I can’t do too much of it.
In truth, Waititi’s comments reaffirm what many had already suspected: Disney is much stricter with its Star Wars franchise, and won’t hesitate to mix things up if and when things go off the rails. It’s the reason why Colin Trevorrow was replaced at the helm of Episode IX, while Phil Lord and Chris Miller were ousted from Solo: A Star Wars Story for their experimental approach – word is the directors favored improv comedy over what was down on the script. And we all know how that turned out.
With that in mind, it’ll be interesting to see how The Mandalorian fares when it debuts via Disney Plus later this year.