Though he may be a filmmaker fit for the gods (of love and thunder), Taika Waititi still found the time to develop yet another series for FX. The Thor: Ragnarok director, whose TV series version of the hysterical FX comedy What We Do in the Shadows is heading into a third season, is one of the minds behind the half-hour comedy Reservation Dogs, which has already been handed a series order by FX.
Variety reports that Waititi is teaming up with Native American writer and director Sterlin Harjo for the half-hour comedy Reservation Dogs, which follows “four Native teenagers in rural Oklahoma who spend their days committing crime and fighting it.”
The series stars D’Pharaoh Woon-A-Tai, Devery Jacobs, Paulina Alexis, and Lane Factor as the aforementioned teens, who can be seen in the first-look image above. The pilot episode also features guest stars Tamara Podemski, Zahn McClarnon, Macon Blair, Kirk Fox, Matty Cardarople, Dallas Goldtooth, Lil Mike and Funny Bone.
Waititi co-wrote the pilot with Harjo, who also directed the Oklahoma-set pilot episode (almost all of Native Oklahoman Harjo’s previous feature films and documentaries are set in that state). Waititi and Harjo will executive produce Reservation Dogs alongside What We Do in the Shadows producer Garrett Basch.
“Sterlin Harjo draws deeply on his experiences as a Native Oklahoman to make Reservation Dogs a true-to-life and incredibly funny story of youth, courage and misadventures,” said Nick Grad, FX Entertainment’s president of original programming. “Taika Waititi lends his considerable talents to the series, helping Sterlin and their creative partner Garrett Basch produce a unique and original series we can’t wait for audiences to see.”
“As longtime friends, it was only natural that Taika and I found a project together, and what better than a show that celebrates the complementary storytelling styles of our indigenous communities – mine in Oklahoma and Taika’s in Aotearoa,” added Harjo. “We’re thrilled by the opportunity to tell the Reservation Dogs’ story with our amazing cast and crew, Garrett Basch, and the whole team at FX.”
A coming-of-age series with a comedic criminal twist and a punny title? It sounds promising, especially with Waititi involved (though likely only to kick things off before he hands the reins over to his creative partners and heads back to the Marvel universe). Waititi is busy juggling several other TV projects as well, including the HBO Max pirate comedy Our Flag Means Death and Apple TV+’s Time Bandits. After the critical success of What We Do in the Shadows — based on the 2014 film of the same name co-directed by Waititi — its no wonder FX was quick to give Reservation Dogs a series order. And though this project isn’t based on a previous Waititi project, it’s clear that the filmmaker is using his status to boost creators of color and give voice to underseen communities.
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