Taika Waititi says he directed Marvel Thor films as he 'was poor', needed 'opportunity to feed my kids'

Taika Waititi has said he took on the Thor films to feed his children.
Taika Waititi has said he took on the Thor films to feed his children. Photo credit: Getty Images

Taika Waititi has said he had "no interest" in being part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe as a director, but took on Thor because he "was poor" and it gave him an "opportunity to feed my kids". 

The filmmaker made the comments on an episode of the SmartLess podcast. 

Waititi, who directed 2017's Thor: Ragnarok and 2022's Thor: Love and Thunder, admitted that family circumstances ultimately changed his decision on directing the blockbusters

"You know what? I had no interest in doing one of those films. It wasn't on my plan for my career as an auteur.  

"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'." 

It's likely Waititi had his tongue in his cheek during the interview, as he also said he was "still baffled" by the success of the Thor character, made popular by actor Chris Hemsworth. 

"And 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'.  

"And then I did some research on it, and I read one Thor comic or 18 pages, or however long they are. I was still baffled by this character." 

Waititi also joked that Marvel had scraped "the bottom of the barrel" when he was brought into the MCU. 

"I think there was no place left for them to go with that. I thought, 'Well, they've called me in, this is really the bottom of the barrel." 

In June, Hemsworth suggested adding yet more comedic elements into the story was a bad idea, telling GQ he thought Waititi's take on the superhero may have gotten "too silly". 

Love and Thunder has a positive review rating of 63 percent on aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, which states the audience consensus is: "Even though Thor: Love and Thunder's constant silliness makes it hard to invest in the more serious sides of the story, there's still plenty here to enjoy." 

Taika Waititi can also be seen on The Project NZ on Tuesday, from 7pm on Three and ThreeNow.