Police called over Kiwi star Manu Bennett's naked haka

Author
Spy,
Section
Entertainment,
Publish Date
Sunday, 9 June 2019, 10:07AM
Manu Bennett performed the solo haka at the Unesco World Heritage Site in the ancient capital of Dacia. (Photo / via Instagram)
Manu Bennett performed the solo haka at the Unesco World Heritage Site in the ancient capital of Dacia. (Photo / via Instagram)

Police were called after Kiwi action star Manu Bennett performed a naked haka at an ancient world heritage site in Romania.

The 49-year-old former Arrow and Spartacus star was at the Comic Con in Bucharest.

The Shannara Chronicles' actor travelled to the Sarmizegetusa Regia - a Unesco World Heritage Site in the ancient capital of Dacia.

Among the stone fortifications, thought to date back to AD2, he stripped and performed the haka.

Bennett told Spy it was a cultural performance - but Romanian authorities were not so enamoured.

Local police said a complaint was made "that a man has stripped off and entered the Great Circular Temple" and they were preparing criminal charges.

"The gendarmes have drawn up deeds of committing the act of aggression against good morals," media reported.

Bennett found himself in hot water as signs warn visitors away. He told Spy he apologised as he did not speak Romanian and did not understand the signs.

Footage of Bennett doing the haka was shared on social media. Photo / Instagram.

Footage of Bennett doing the haka was shared on social media. Photo / Instagram.

And he said it was worth the attention as it felt like an important thing to do in context with the site's ancient war history.

"It was very traditional for Māori warriors to go into battle naked," Bennett said.

"Basically naked is more sacred and personal items are considered noa, not sacred. All things have energy and to fight naked means to fight pure, as with haka."

Bennett was in Romania for the Comic Con in Bucharest.

"When I am at a waterfall in Iceland or in the mountains of Greece I do my haka naked, it's more pure and earthly things like modern watches, jewellery and clothing have no place in the energy. I performed the haka with complete spiritual respect to the Dracian ancestors and am honored by the moment."

Bennett insisted the organisers at the Comic Con appreciated the gesture and understood it from his cultural perspective.

The Comic Con also featured Game of Thrones' actors Carice van Houten (Melisandre) and Vladimir Furdik (The Night King) as well as stars of Vampire and Hobbit franchises.

The trip is part of a politically-motivated European sojourn for Bennett.

Last month he was in Greece for the Memorial Day for the 671 New Zealand soldiers who died in The Battle for Crete. He told Spy he is a Māori gladiator fighting for the people.

Among commemorations for the Allied forces there was time spent on a special memorial for the Māori Battalion.

Officials asked Bennett to perform a haka on 42nd St, the place where the Māori Battalion led their legendary bayonet charge against a much larger German force in 1941.

Afterwards Bennett taught a group of Greek children the words and they performed it on the same spot it as was performed by the Māori Battalion.

"Last year I took to the stage at a rally in front of Greece's Parliament Building in Athens to honour the fallen members of the Māori Battalion — and to also argue why members of New Zealand's armed forces and members of the Māori Battalion, in particular, died in Greece defending the country from German invasion only to have Germany now buying Greece's freeways, port and airports.

Manu Bennett visited Sarmizegetusa Regia - a Unesco World Heritage Site in the ancient capital of Dacia. Photo / Supplied.

Manu Bennett visited Sarmizegetusa Regia - a Unesco World Heritage Site in the ancient capital of Dacia. Photo / Supplied.

"Our ancestors would be turning in their graves on Crete to see what's happening to Greece now under the heel of Germany."

Bennett claims that many Greeks demand Germany repay their own debt to Greece War Reparations for the one-in-10 Greeks who died during the war.

He also took part in a rally at Mt Athos and traveled to Athens to discuss a role in a Greek film about the 1946-49 civil war and the massacre at Chios in 1882.

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