COVID-19: Taika Waititi joins Super Saturday Vaxathon encouraging Kiwis to get vaccinated against coronavirus

New Zealand film star Taika Waititi has encouraged all Kiwis to get vaccinated against COVID-19 during the Super Saturday 'Vaxathon'. 

The New Zealand film star has been busy acting, writing and producing films during 2021 but still misses home and encourages all New Zealanders to get vaccinated so restrictions can be eased. 

Waititi joined Three's Super Saturday 'Vaxathon' and had a simple message for New Zealanders. 

"Get the vax, I'd like to come home, mainly selfishly," Waititi joked.

"If we can get as many people vaccinated we can ease up on the border scenarios and maybe we can have a bit more of a flow in and out of the country at some stage. 

"But also it makes sense. I want people to be safe and also to go back and continue our lives as normal."

Waititi, who is currently based in California, said life is getting back to pre-COVID normal there after being devastated by COVID-19. 

California has had over 4.7 million total COVID-19 cases and 70,782 cases according to WorldOMeter.

"I'm in Los Angeles at the moment, and in the States it's been pretty atrocious as we know but it feels pretty normal here now," Waititi told the Super Saturday 'Vaxathon'.

"We are out and about, we are going to restaurants, everything has opened up and it's because a lot of people here in California are now vaccinated. I'm really urging as many people as I can to do it."

Waititi still hasn't forgotten about home even though he's rarely ventured back to New Zealand since COVID came to New Zealand back in March 2020. 

"I have to check in with home all the time so I don't get homesick," he said.

"Because of COVID, I haven't been able to come back. The last time I came back was for five days and that was a small little window when the borders were open. 

"Some of us don't have time to do the two weeks quarantine multiple times during the year, so for me I want to come home. Just let me come home."

The New Zealand film producer told the 'Vaxathon' that he is grateful to have a job and is looking forward to Kiwis seeing his films being released in 2022. 

"It's only mahi for me really, I enjoy the work and I'm lucky I get to work around my friends and that is how I socialise by working," he said.

"I'm very lucky to have a job in the first place and be over here and to be working and I'm able to get things done. 

"I'm really proud of a lot of the shows I'm doing this year and I've got two films coming out next year. I discovered the key is to go to sleep so you can keep working and stay healthy." 

People are coming out in force to be vaccinated on Saturday. As of 12:40pm, 66,766 people have received a jab. 18,991 of those are first dose and 47,775 have been second dose. 

When breaking that down into ethnicities, 10,632 doses have been given to Māori, 2761 are Samoan and 1506 are Tongan.