Tower of Terror: Taika Waititi is attached to direct Scarlett Johansson in ride-based movie

Taika Waititi is (still) attached to direct Scarlett Johansson in Disney’s ride-based movie Tower of Terror

Back in June of 2021, it was announced that Scarlett Johansson had signed on to star in and produce Tower of Terror, a film inspired the Disney theme park ride. And even though Johansson would go on to sue Disney for giving her Marvel movie Black Widow a day-and-date streaming and theatrical release instead of the exclusively theatrical release that was in her contract, Variety assures that her working relationship with the studio is still intact. She’s still attached to the Tower of Terror project – and Variety also confirmed that Thor: Ragnarok and Thor: Love and Thunder director Taika Waititi is on board to direct the film!

A rumor that Waititi would be directing Tower of Terror first emerged in November of 2021, but Disney has never made an official announcement.

Josh Cooley, director of Toy Story 4 and writer of Inside Out, is writing Tower of Terror, but plot details have not been revealed. The drop tower dark ride was initially inspired by The Twilight Zone and gives the visitors of Disney parks the chance to ride on an elevator that was the site of a mysterious disappearance back in the 1930s. Here’s a description of the set-up from the ride’s Wikipedia page: 

“Hollywood, 1939. Amid the glitz and the glitter of a bustling movie town at the height of its golden age, the Hollywood Tower Hotel was a star in its own right, a beacon for the show business elite. Now, something is about to happen that will change all that.”

As the preshow video (directed by Joe Dante) plays, a lightning bolt strikes the tower and causes five people — a celebrity couple, a rising child star, her nanny, and a hotel bellhop — to vanish from the elevator, along with an entire wing of the building. 

During the ride on the elevator, passengers get a peek into the Fifth Dimension. There are versions of the Tower of Terror at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Tokyo DisneySea, and Walt Disney Studios Park. There used to be one at Disney California Adventure, but it was replaced by a Guardians of the Galaxy ride. The Tokyo version removed the Twilight Zone connection. Also free of any connection to The Twilight Zone was the 1997 TV movie based on the Tower of Terror, a movie which starred Steve Guttenberg and Kirsten Dunst.

Johansson will be producing the new Tower of Terror movie through her company These Pictures, alongside Jonathan Lia.

The Black Widow lawsuit was reportedly settled in Johansson’s favor, with the actress possibly even getting more than $40 million for residuals she may have lost due to the streaming release. So it’s easy to see why her problems with Disney are water under the bridge. She also happens to be a huge fan of the Disney theme parks, visiting Disney World at least ten times a year, and Disney films.

Johansson and Waititi previously worked together on Jojo Rabbit. While we wait to find out when they are going to get rolling on Tower of Terror, Johansson will soon be seen in Wes Anderson’s Asteroid City, which reaches theatres on June 16th, and Waititi’s soccer comedy Next Goal Wins is set to reach theatres on September 22nd.

What do you think of Scarlett Johannson and Taika Waititi teaming up for Tower of Terror? Let us know by leaving a comment below.

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