After taking the piss out of vampires, Thor, Star Wars, and Adolf Friggin’ Hitler, Taika Waititi has set his sights on a new target. The iconoclastic, sharply dressed, multi-hyphenate filmmaker behind such titles as Thor: Ragnarok and Jojo Rabbit is developing a new TV series for HBO Max. Its title: Our Flag Means Death. Its target: Pirates. Yarrr.
The series is loosely based on the real life of Stede Bonnet, who was known as “The Gentleman Pirate” because he whip-turned from a life of comfortable, bourgeois, aristocratic wealth to a life of criminal adventures on the high seas. Waititi serves as an executive producer on Our Flag Means Death and will direct the pilot. The series is created and showrun by David Jenkins (People of Earth), who also serves as an executive producer alongside Garrett Basch (What We Do in the Shadows, natch) and Dan Halsted (Garden State). While no further specific casting or plot details have been announced, HBO Max did reveal that production on the first episode will begin once Waititi finishes shooting Thor: Love and Thunder.
“David and Taika’s unique take on Bonnet’s rollicking misadventures on the high seas, are sure to thrill and delight audiences everywhere,” says Sarah Aubrey, head of original content for HBO Max, and I tend to agree, even with this scant information. Waititi has such a unique, specific comedy voice, especially when applied to genre conventions usually dealt with seriously, and Jenkins’ People of Earth was an underrated genre-comedy (alien invasion) as well. With What We Do in the Shadows earning tons of acclaim and Emmy noms for FX, it looks like HBO Max is trying to make a big splash in the prestige comedy world, and bringing these folks aboard makes sense. The remaining question: Who should play Stede Bonnet?
For more from Waititi, here’s what we know about Thor: Love and Thunder thus far.