Taika Waititi opens up about growing up 'very poor'

Publish Date
Tuesday, 4 June 2019, 6:07PM
Getty Images

Getty Images

Taika Waititi has opened up about his family life growing up "very poor" with a father who was a "founding member" of a New Zealand bike gang.

The Thor: Ragnarok director appeared on the very first episode of new podcast Visitations with Lord of the Rings star Elijah Wood and writer/producer Daniel Noah.

The stars hung out with Waititi at his home, where the Kiwi director revealed his father's links to the bike gang Satans Slaves, and that he was in fact "one of the founding members" of the gang.

"I came from a very poor background... it was a fishing town, basically a village because it's only a few hundred people in this concentrated area and most people are related so it's a very tight family community," he revealed.

He said he grew up "between there and Wellington" with "a solo mum who was holding down like three jobs at a time" - "so... I wasn't always thinking about money but it was like, 'oh man, shit's gotta be better than this'".

He said at the time, his family's big dream wasn't to have a big mansion, but rather just to have a microwave.

When he spoke about his father's involvement in the Satan Slaves, a shocked Elijah Woods exclaimed: "No way!"

He didn't linger on the subject, but later went on to speak about his dad passing away four years ago, adding: "We didn't have a massively close relationship".

However he did say his father character in his hit movie Boy was based largely on his father, who he said was, "very proud of all the stuff that I did."

Waititi also spoke at length about his work, inspirations and family and he and Elijah Wood even swapped stories about their favourite places in New Zealand.

This article was originally published at nzherald.co.nz and is reproduced here with permission