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When Sir Ben Kingsley spoke recently to the Wall Street Journal’s Barbara Chai about his character the Mandarin in Iron Man 3, he also spoke briefly about his Ender’s Game role as Mazer Rackham and the facial tattoos, known in Maori tradition as “tā moko”.

He also mentions a bit of Mazer’s background story.

“I had the privilege of being advised and guided by a Maori who knows all about Ta Moko [Maori tattoo] and what each line and design means – its ancestry,” Kingsley said in an interview. “When it’s accurately and beautifully presented, it’s very empowering for the actor. To be able to put that on and allow it to tell its own story, and then you breathe life into it yourself.”

Kingsley said his key into Mazer was that the character loved his Maori father, a warrior whom he had lost in the Great Battle for the planet.

What do you guys think? Is it possible the pilot we’re seeing in the trailer isn’t Mazer, but Mazer’s father?

Source: WSJ


  1. Jason says:

    Well, I did not see any facial tatoos on the pilots face. So I’m not sure it is a Maori pilot.

    • Yeah I didn’t see any either. I wonder if Ben Kingsley made that up to assist his acting or if it actually is part of the background story.

      • Wendy Clare says:

        Why does his father have to be one of the pilots in the trailer? As a former theater brat I fully understand what he’s talking about. You try to glean as much as you can out of the script and (in this case) the source material, then you fill in the blanks. It’s an extremely helpful tool to enable you to connect more with your role. I think the whole thing is really cool. I have seen some comments on Youtube, though, apparently from Maoris who think it’s “disrespectful”…so I hope they can somehow learn that Sir Ben was doing it to *honor* this part of Maori culture, not just because it looks awesome.

        • He doesn’t “have” to be, it was just a thought. 🙂

          What I find more disrespectful is all the people laughing at the tattoos and calling them “ridiculous”. Don’t people realize they’re saying this about a cultural tradition? Apparently not.

  2. I am against the tattoos only because they weren’t in the Ender’s Game in my head. It pulls me out of it when I see them.

  3. disqus_62B0lykUfa says:

    Who gave him permission? Just a quetion? Would realy like to know :/

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