Some actors study subjects for years – decades, even – in order to forge the perfect portrayal of their character. Some sacrifice personal relationships in the relentless pursuit of their craft. For them, it becomes an obsession; an all-consuming addiction; the ultimate performance justifying whatever means it took to get them there. And then there’s Taika Waititi, who barely scratched himself before playing Hitler on the big screen.
Waititi, your favourite Kiwi Daddy-type, plays Hitler – or a child’s imaginary friend version of Hitler – in the upcoming film Jojo Rabbit, which Taika both directed and wrote the adapted script for as well.
The film follows a 10-year-old German boy during World War II who is an unashamed follower of Hitler Youth, but who has to deal with some weird realities after he finds a Jewish girl that his mother has been hiding in their attic. It’s a comedy film, in case you were wondering.
Speaking to Deadline, Waititi detailed what level of research and preparation he put into playing a character of such historical significance: None. Absolutely none.
Waititi explained that in order to play a hyper-stylised version of Hitler that wasn’t really based in any reality, he basically did no background reading whatsoever and just showed up to the set with a “shitty little moustache” and a “mediocre German accent.”
I didn’t have to do any research, and I didn’t do any research. I didn’t base him on anything I’d seen about Hitler before. I just made him a version of myself that happened to have a bad haircut and a sh*tty little moustache. And a mediocre German accent.
It would just be too weird to play the actual Hitler, and I don’t think people would enjoy the character as much. Because he was such a fucking cunt, and everyone knows that as well. I think people have got to relate to really enjoy the ride.
Further clarifying, Taika asserted the version of Hitler in the film isn’t really Hitler, just an overgrown child in a Nazi outfit.
He’s not really Hitler. He’s like a 10 year-old kid’s version of Hitler. So he doesn’t have to share anything with actual Hitler, because 10 year-olds never meet Hitler. He’s basically a 10 year-old who happens to have a tiny little moustache.
And just in case that wasn’t clear by itself, Waititi took to Twitter earlier today to provide some clarification.
— Taika Waititi (@TaikaWaititi) May 15, 2019
Glad we got that sorted.
Jojo Rabbit is due to hit cinemas this coming October.Source: Deadline