Taika Waititi has had a penchant of adding himself into his own movies, and he’s going to be playing a fictional version of Adolf Hitler in Jojo Rabbit. As it turns out Waititi wasn’t the original choice to play Hitler, and he ended up getting the role because no one else had the guts to take the part on.
As per USA Today, Waititi explains that it was Fox Searchlight that got him to play the Fuhrer. Waititi says:
“We went out to a lot of actors to play the role of Hitler but their agents were all too scared to even ask them, so Fox Searchlight encouraged me to do it.”
Though the Thor: Ragnarok director is playing an imaginary version of Hitler in the film, he also goes on about how it kind of takes a toll on himself to play one of the most reviled men in history. Waititi continues:
“By far, the most difficult aspect of the role was having to see myself in the mirror as Hitler. As one can imagine, I really don’t like the guy and I felt like he had eaten me.”
If anything, Waititi is joining a long line of entertainers who are seeking to make Hitler look like a buffoon compared to his real-life persona. We had Charlie Chaplin make fun of the Fuhrer in The Great Dictator, and comedy master Mel Brooks has infamously thrown jabs at Hitler throughout his filmography.
Set during World War Two, an awkward young German boy whose only ally is his imaginary friend Hitler has his naïve patriotism tested when he meets a young girl who upends his world views.
Catch Waititi’s Hitler in Jojo Rabbit which hits theaters Oct. 18.