Andre Botha: Avatar 2 Body Double.
By Dan Dobbin.
Watched Avatar? Of course you have. The much hyped 3D fantasia from 2009 was supposed to usher in the new era of immersive cinema experience for Joe and Jane Public, and broke box office records.
As the world’s most expensive Comboys and Indians movie, expect this time the Indians win against the relentless march of colonial capitalism, James Cameron’s film invited the viewer to reflect on the plight of indigenous peoples and environmental destruction across the globe.
Most people seem to just think about the pretty flashing visuals and hair connection sexy time between the big blues.
Luckily the big stretched smurfs were victorious in the first film otherwise the sequel film would have been a totally different proposition. As French philosopher Jean Paul Satre succinctly put it ” Colonialism equals genocide”.
Avatar 2 as a grinding examination of the economic, cultural and social despair that is wrought upon communities who are forced to abandon traditional ways and adapt to a new way of life while facing systematical barriers to that intergration doesn’t sound like it would be a Hollywood hit.
Still, it is 2020….
So what does all this have to do with the boogieverse I here you ask?
It seems two times world champ from the 90’s and ridiculously hard charging Andre Botha has been hired to be Aussie actor Sam Worthington’s stunt and body double for the upcoming sequel.
The premise for the second in the Avatar series is that the nasty colonial capitalists return to Pandora for another go at conquest, but having learnt from the mistakes of the first film employ new tactics.
Instead of direct military action to try to dominate the land, they borrow from the old European handbook of sending benevolent missionaries riddled with foreign diseases to try to save the primitive Pandoran’s from their savage ways.
Within this group is an insider who purposely releases a Smallpox variant, with its 90% casualty rate capasity amoungst those without any immunity, in “gifts” to the Na’vi.
No need for guns and steel when you’ve got germs.
Because the homosapiens already have a genetic resistance to the disease, their human form is better fit in which to search for the vaccine that will for save the inhabitants of Pandora from the ravages of a plandemic.
However, an issue during the intergration process means they get stuck halfway between avatar and human form.
Enter the need for a tall, lanky, stretched out version of Sam Worthington, aka the 6’4′ Dr Dre Botha for use in wide framed shots.
In an effort to get to know his body double better, Worthington suggested that the pair go for a surf together, a pass time he pick up while filming ” Drift” on Australia’s West Coast in 2013.
“Sam knows I’m a booger, and as a method actor it seems like he did his homework to make a good impression” said Dre.
“He rocked up with a Stewart board in Mike’s classic colourway. Nice. Some all black Ally fins as a nod to my sponsor. Good start. But he kind of blew it with the wrist leash and Rip Curl wetty, everyone knows only kooks use either”.
Still, once he caught a wave Andre was impressed.
” Bruh, he had straight up Neal Stephenson style! Hand in the middle of the nose, flat palmed on the rail, so Lekker! Such a cool throw back to one of South Africa’s greats”.
But it’s the lesson Dre learnt on set that have stayed with him after the filming experience.
” Coming from South Africa where we haven’t had much of a history of issues with colonial occupation, I really learned alot, especially from Sam”.
“Who’d have thought that a first world country like Australia would be regularly criticized by the United Nations for their policies relating to Aboriginal Australians? The Indonesians are a bunch of cunts for what they’re doing in West Papua. No wonder the Hawaiian’s hate the haoles after what was a straight up military coup in the 1890’s. Don’t even start me on how Native American peoples are still treated in areas like the Pine Ridge reservation in the U.S to this day, the Uyghurs in China, the Kurds….”
At this point Andre wanders off listing the many acts of colonial enterprise and occupation from the past and present from around the world.
Avatar 2 is due for release in December, 2022.
Watch Neal Stephenson ripping below.