|Taika Waititi Quick Info|
|Date of Birth||August 16, 1975|
Taika Waititi is a New Zealander director, producer, screenwriter, actor, and comedian who is best known for his direction of films such as Boy (2010), What We Do in the Shadows (2014), Hunt for the Wilderpeople (2016), Thor: Ragnarok (2017), and Jojo Rabbit (2019). For the last of those films, he won a BAFTA Award as well as an Academy Award in the category of ‘Best Adapted Screenplay’. He has also directed several short films, most notable among them being Two Cars, One Night (2004) which was nominated for an Academy Award in the category of ‘Best Live Action Short Film’. Besides direction, he often acts and performs voice-over roles which includes portraying an imaginary version of Adolf Hitler in Jojo Rabbit (2019) and voicing the character of IG-11 in space western web TV series The Mandalorian (2019–present). The latter performance had earned him a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for ‘Outstanding Character Voice-Over Performance’.
Taika David Cohen
Raukokore, Bay of Plenty, North Island, New Zealand
Los Angeles, California, United States
Taika had attended the Onslow College in Johnsonville, Wellington, for his secondary education. After his high school graduation, he had attended the Victoria University of Wellington from where he had graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in theatre studies, in 1997.
Director, Producer, Screenwriter, Actor, Comedian
- Father – Taika Waititi (Artist, Farmer)
- Mother – Robin Cohen (School Teacher)
- Others – Eruiti Taika/Edward Waititi (Paternal Grandfather), Matewa Delamere (Paternal Grandmother), David Cohen (Maternal Grandfather), Bertha Mary Bond (Maternal Grandmother), John Winstanley (Father-in-Law) (Home Renovator), Cherry Wilson (Mother-in-Law) (Psychotherapist), Tommy Kapai aka Tommy Wilson (Uncle-in-Law) (Children’s Author), Kiri Allan (Cousin-in-Law) (Politician, Lawyer, Member of the New Zealand Parliament)
6 ft or 183 cm
75 kg or 165.5 lbs
Girlfriend / Spouse
Taika has dated –
- Chelsea Winstanley (2011–Present) – Taika got married to New Zealander film producer and director Chelsea Winstanley in 2011. They have 2 daughters together named Te Hinekāhu (b. May 2012) and Matewa Kiritapu (b. August 2015).
Race / Ethnicity
He is of Te Whānau-ā-Apanui (Māori tribe), French-Canadian, and, distant British descent on his father’s side and Irish, English, Scottish, Northern Irish, and Ashkenazi Jewish descent on his mother’s side.
- Tousled, wavy hair
- Often sports a beard or a mustache
- Affable smile
Taika Waititi Facts
- His first name, Taika, in Māori means ‘Tiger’. It also means ‘Magic’ in Finnish.
- Before directing the superhero film Thor: Ragnarok (2017), he had been involved with another film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). He had written and directed the mid-credits scene for Doctor Strange (2016) but was uncredited.
- When he won an Academy Award for Jojo Rabbit (2019), in the category of ‘Best Adapted Screenplay’, he became the first person of Māori descent to achieve the feat.
- The mockumentary horror comedy film What We Do in the Shadows (2014) that was produced, co-written, and co-directed by Taika was later adapted into a TV series of the same name (2019–present). He had directed 3 episodes in the show’s 1st season and the series was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award in the category of ‘Outstanding Comedy Series’.
Featured Image by Taika Waititi / Instagram