Taika Waititi – Playing a Buffoonish Hitler in “Jojo Rabbit” | The Daily Show

Taika Waititi – Playing a Buffoonish Hitler in “Jojo Rabbit” | The Daily Show


Welcome to The Daily Show, sir. Thank you very much
for having me. Uh, I am a big fan of your work. You have been making
some of the funniest films that we have had the pleasure
of enjoying in the cinema. -Thank God.
-But Jojo Rabbit is truly one of the strangest
films people will go and watch, in an amazing way. -Yeah. -How do you even begin
to pitch to a studio? “Hey, guys, I’m gonna make
a movie about a young boy “who’s growing up
in Nazi Germany, and his imaginary friend
is Hitler.” You say, “Hey, guys,”
and then you stop there. -(laughter)
-That’s pretty much it. It was a very hard film
to pitch. “Oh, uh, so, it’s a film about
young boy in the Hitler Youth.” Most people are,
“Mm, that’s enough for me. Not interested.” Uh, but I actually just… I ended up
having to write the script -and let that do all the talking
for me with this. -Right. It is a very hard thing
to pitch, ’cause tonally,
it shifts around quite a lot. There’s a lot of comedy
and-and drama and tragedy, and it is a real mix. -You can’t kind of pick one.
-Right, yeah. It really… It really is sharp
in a satirical voice, as well, because, you know,
you’re commenting on something
that we all know happened. But what’s really interesting is
you’re commenting on something that-that I think
a lot of people don’t talk enough about
today in the world, and that is how
we are conditioned from the time we’re children. -Yeah.
-You see this little child who is born in Nazi Germany, and he is only taught
to be a Nazi. And we like him because we sort of understand
that he had no other choice, and we see the conflict
that he has with being a Nazi and then, like,
his mother going like, -“No, you can be a good person.”
-Yeah, that’s right. And when-when children
were indoctrinated into the Hitler Youth, um, the first lesson
they were taught was to rebel
against your parents. “Don’t listen to your parents
and what they try and tell you. “Listen to us. You know, we… “Hitler is now your father.
And listen to us, and listen to, you know,
your teachers.” Um, and, so,
if a parent in those times… If you, you know,
if you wanted to try and convince your-your child,
“Don’t be a Nazi,” uh, it was a very… -it was a very dangerous thing
to do. -Right. You know, ’cause they would say,
“If your parents, uh… “You know, if they…
if they judge us “or if they criticize the party, tell us,
and we’ll take care of that.” -“We’ll take care
of your parents.” -Yeah. Right. And you see that
in the story. And I-I really wish
I could explain to people… I don’t want to give
anything away, but it’s, like… It really is…
It is a weird movie in that, like, you’re laughing,
and then you’re sad, and then you’re angry,
and then there’s moments where you’re like, “This feels
like what’s happening today.” -Yeah. -You know? You feel
people who are radicalized, and you go,
“Why do you have this hate, or why do you feel
the way you do?” And they’re like,
“Well, that’s all I’ve known.” Isn’t it weird that in 2019, someone still has to make
a movie trying to explain to people
not to be a Nazi? (laughter and applause) Was it ever awkward for you,
like, looking in the mirror? I mean, like,
did your family say anything? Because, I mean,
you know, you… Well, my mother came to visit
set, and we were shooting -in Prague… -‘Cause a lot
of people don’t know this -about you, but you’re Jewish.
-Yeah. And, like, like, like,
you have Jewish family. And that makes it okay. -(laughter)
-Well, what I’m saying, like, that makes it more awkward,
I think, is that, like.. It makes it more…
Oh, for sure. -And it… -So, like,
your family is just like, “Wait, so you’re gonna…
you’re gonna be Hitler?” There’s double the guilt
going on. -There’s double…
-(laughter) So, I, uh… No, I put the costume on
for the first time. On paper, it’s simply,
“This is gonna be a great idea.” Uh, then you put it all on. You put
the ridiculous mustache on, and you look in the mirror,
and, I mean, the… I mean, really, the main word to describe it all
is “embarrassed.” -Oh, that’s right.
I was embarrassed. -Right. And… But imagine
trying to-to, uh… to direct people
dressed like that. -‘Cause you… -You know.
‘Cause, you know, like, you go through…
you go through most of your day. You know, you don’t really
remember what you look like. And I was like…
I’ll be directing people, “Hey, that’s really good. Um,
that was really good, Scarlett. “So, look,
why don’t we just try to do another one
where you go over there.” And you can see, like,
she’s there going… (laughter) And I would catch
a little glimpse of myself in a reflection and realize,
“Oh, my God. That’s right. I’m dressed like this guy.” -Yes, you are…
-And, so, then I said, “So, you don’t have to do
what I say. I’m not… “That’s not an order.
I’m not tell… “I’m not…
I’m not forcing you to do that. “This is… It’s your choice. “Yeah, yeah, yeah.
You’re a free person. “You know, 2018.
You do what you want. -“Hey. -“Hey, I’m not directing.
I’m suggesting. -“Hey. Hey. -“Hey. Hey. -“I’m not directing,
I’m suggesting. -You do it.”
-“A suggestion. It’s the power of suggestion.” Um, you have
a really stellar cast. I mean, the young man
who we see there playing Jojo the Rabbit,
he’s phenomenal. And, I mean, you…
Like, all these young kids in the movie are so amazing
in playing the story. And then you have
Scarlett Johansson, who’s also phenomenal
as the mom in the story. Why did you choose to center
the story around the kids? Because it’s not a story told
through the lens of the adults. The adults are in the story, -but it is really through
the lens of children. -Yeah. -Why? -Well, I’ve never
really seen films set, uh, with, uh, with a backdrop
of conflict or wars really from a child’s
point of view. And I really wanted to explore
that, uh, that world. And I’ve worked with a lot
of kids in my films. Like, a lot of my films,
uh, you know, they deal with, you know,
young boys with dad issues. Yeah, but, so, I’ve
always worked with these kids, and-and the boy plays Jojo,
Roman Griffin Davis, incredibly beautiful,
sensitive young guy who, um,
who really carries the film and really saved me
from embarrassment. I-I think there’s nothing
to be embarrassed about. It’s truly one of the most
original, funny, fantastic films I’ve watched
in a very long time. -Thank you very much for being
on the show. -Thank you. Thank you for making the movie.
For real. Jojo Rabbit opens
in select cities October 18 and will be in theaters
nationwide very soon. Taika Waititi, everybody.

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  1. Can we make a movie that teaches people not to be an asshole to each other? We can call it "Bob Ross, Mr. Rodgers, Jim Henson Experience"

  2. Hey usa's joker y not making any movie on #mao😅
    China :- wtf usa😠😠😠
    USA :- get off French letter 🤭🤭🤭🤣🤣🤣🤣.

  3. They wrote his name differently in the thumbnail and the picture. The thumbnail says “Taiki” and the picture says “Taika”

  4. Taika trades on being a New Zealander, yet shits on our country for being racist. Which rings a tad hollow, given that this supposedly racist culture made him famous, acclaimed and rich long before he sucked Hollywood's cock with that Thor movie. An ungrateful hypocrite cunt.

  5. Everytime I wake up Im happy I have something to watch! Love you trevor! And you scrolling reading this comment, HAVE A GREAT DAY!!

  6. Imagine in 20 year or so their made a movie about a white Supremacy kid and his imaginary friend Donald Trump 😂😂😂

  7. I was worried the jojo rabbit movie was going to be some kind of "southpark-esq social taboo" movie comparing modern day liberals to nazi or something. Because plenty of people think/ talk/ act that way enough already. Comparing someone who wants to just be gay without fear, or clean the ocean, or give women fair pay, the equivalent of WWII nazi. It's so tiresome.

  8. "Ive never seen a movie with the backdrop of conflict or wars from a child's point of view"
    Check out 'Grave of the Fireflies'. Fantastic movie with that exact premise.

  9. I remember seeing the preview and thinking “I can’t wait for this film” I fell in love with him and Jamaine Clement’s style immediately. Thor was the best Marvel movie to date. And this one will be awesome. We need more filmmakers like this and films with messages like this.
    Also – the Warriors should be rereleased. The most multicultural gang film of all times. Latinos and Caucasians in the Asian gang, Asians, African Americans and Caucasians in the Latino gang. If the gangs could just get along together it’d be fine! And of course they eventually do. We need more films like that right now.

  10. Based on what I've heard it's been critically dividing. Which in itself is a good thing because they can't decide if it's a great movie with a great message or great movie but relevant. Either way I wanna watch it myself so I can find out

  11. People do not give this man enough praise for Ragnarok. Everything from the trailer to the end credits where brilliant.

    Marvel movies in general suck ass, but this movie was a masterpiece.

  12. "Isn't it weird that in 2019, someone still has to make a movie trying to explain to people not to be a Nazi?"
    Ouch, that really struck a chord in the heart.

    Truer words have never been spoken.

  13. Yo Trevor, how you is a fan of everything your guest is on is nutzzzz,, or just like laughter you gotta fake it in showbiz.

  14. "Okay guys- here's the pitch.

    It's 'Moon Boy,' but he's a Hitler Youth and his imaginary friend is Hitler.

    Where are you going?"

  15. Dude. Oxford just banned clapping. Turns out its triggering a lot of young students.
    This world is going to shite whether or not nazis exist.

  16. Really want to see Jojo Rabbit but they are not showing in my town yet. Hopefully it will come to a theater near me soon.

  17. "Ive never seen a movie with the backdrop of conflict or wars from a child's point of view"
    I love you Taika, but my dude, there are dozens and dozens of war film from the POV of children

  18. I just like the fact that both Trevor and Taika halfway through the interview begin speaking with exaggerated Italian American accents, mocking the films of Scorcesse and Coppola who both said Marvel movies as both Trevor and Taika are in the MCU.

  19. Get Director Bong Joon-ho on your show to talk about Parasite!!! I want to see him on actual TV interviews. You're the most open-minded out of other TV interviewers.. please…

  20. korg is now and forever, his best creation. korg is just that funny to me. i still watch all his funny clips on youtube sometimes. perishable rocks HAH.

  21. Yeah I knew it. I knew it would come down to "well actually we can morally capitalize on this movie and say that we are being oppressed too" . I'm so officially over Democrats. FUCKING pathetic.

  22. To all of you thinking Hitler was that big demon, have you ever seen a movie about Germany before both wars? do you know what was going on there? did u ask yourself why the whole country was behind that mad man? maybe you might see him differently.

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