It’ll be hijinks on the high seas when Academy Award-winner Taika Waititi (JoJo Rabbit) dons the luscious locks of Blackbeard in the HBO Max pirate comedy Our Flag Means Death (via Variety).
The show is inspired by the true story of Stede Bonnet, an aristocratic layabout who left his privileged life behind to sail with the infamous Edward Teach — a man with such a lax approach to grooming that it earned him a notoriously hairy nickname. Bonnet will be played by Rhys Darby, a longtime Waititi collaborator and veteran of Flight of the Conchords and What We Do in the Shadows. Waititi is serving as executive producer of the six-episode series, and he’ll also direct the pilot.
The show was created by David Jenkins (People of Earth), and his vision of Edward Teach is of a man who contains multitudes. “Our Blackbeard is a legend, a lover, a fighter, a tactical genius, a poetic soul, and quite possibly insane,” he said. “Only one man could play this role, and that is the great Taika Waititi. We’re thrilled beyond measure he’s decided to don the beard.”
There’s no timetable for Our Flag Means Death, and it may not be easy to find a blank space in Waititi’s calendar. He’s currently locked up in the Marvel Cinematic Universe directing Thor: Love and Thunder, and after that he’s committed to helming a new Star Wars movie, reimagining Charlie and the Chocolate Factory for Netflix, reviving Flash Gordon, and if that weren’t enough, he’s reportedly booked an undisclosed role in James Gunn’s upcoming antihero romp The Suicide Squad.