Rumor: Taika Waititi Might Direct Disney and Scarlett Johansson’s ‘Tower of Terror’

One of the biggest news of last summer was Scarlett Johansson staying at Disney to develop a Tower of Terror adaptation, and more Marvel talent may be joining her.


Tireless Oscar-winner filmmaker Taika Waititi might be the man for the directing job, The DisInsider is claiming. This pick makes a lot of sense, given his experience with both Johansson (Jojo Rabbit) and Disney. Furthermore, the film that put him on Kevin Feige’s radar and eventually landed him Thor: Ragnarok was 2014’s What We Do In The Shadows, a horror comedy about vampires who have to share a house and deal with modern civilization — it spawned a highly successful TV series too.


Aside from producing and helping write some side projects, Waititi is currently in the middle of post-production for Thor: Love and Thunder, which opens July 8, 2022, and has recently wrapped work on the sports comedy-drama Next Goal Wins, while also cooking up a fresh Star Wars film over at Lucasfilm with 1917 scribe Krysty Wilson-Cairns.


The only hurdle in the way of this project has been the Johansson vs. Disney drama over the earnings of Black Widow due to the improvised hybrid release on D+ Premier Access. They finally defused the explosive lawsuit in late September, with Disney likely agreeing to pay the actress a considerable “extra” in order to keep her around as a key partner moving forward.


This project marks yet another stab by Disney at their extensive list of theme park attractions which haven’t made the jump to the big screen. Pirates of the Caribbean is being reworked, so the company is looking at other options to kickstart fresh live-action franchises, such as Jungle Cruise, which has locked a sequel following enough theatrical and D+ success this summer.


Tower of Terror will likely be the next big Disney production for Johansson, who finally said goodbye to Marvel’s Natasha Romanoff with Black Widow earlier this year, but is re-teaming with former Avenger Chris Evans for Apple’s Ghosted. The upcoming project is based on the exhilarating ride that features a creepy narrator who sounds like The Twilight Zone host Rod Serling. The ride was previously turned into a 1997 TV film starring Steve Guttenberg and Kirsten Dunst, but a new theatrical feature has been in development since 2015, when John August (Big Fish, 2019’s Aladdin) was tapped to write a treatment.