Acclaimed film director Taika Waititi has termed his home country New Zealand as a racist country. “It is the best place on the planet, but it’s a racist place,” the Thor: Ragnarok director told a magazine, as reported by The Guardian. “People just flat-out refuse to pronounce Maori names properly.” The Maoris are indigenous people of the Oceanic country.
Taika Watiti, who lives in Los Angeles with his family, added that people in Auckland in particular are “very patronizing” for praising how well he has done “for one of his people”. “They’re like, ‘Oh, you’ve done so well, haven’t you? For how you grew up. For one of your people’,” he said.
“There’s still profiling when it comes to Polynesians. It’s not even a colour thing – like, ‘Oh, there’s a black person.’ It’s, ‘If you’re Poly then you’re getting profiled,” he added.
Taika Watiti, last year, fronted a campaign for New Zealand Human Rights Commission, helming a video against racism. “Racism needs your help to survive,” he said in the video. You may not be in a position to give much to racism, but whatever you feel comfortable giving will make a huge difference.”
Taika Watiti was known for his light-hearted comedies with his own brand of black humour like What We Do in Shadows and Hunt for the Wilderpeople before he was asked to helm the third iteration of the Thor franchise titled Thor: Ragnarok. Apart from directing the film, he also played the roles of Surtur the fire demon and Korg, the cheerful, revolutionary Kronan who assisted Thor in the fight against Hela.