The Gods Must Be Crazy is a 1980 comedy film written, produced, edited and directed by Jamie Uys. An international co-production of South Africa and Botswana, it is the first film in The Gods Must Be Crazy series.
Set in Southern Africa, the film stars Namibian San farmer Nǃxau ǂToma as Xi, a hunter-gatherer of the Kalahari Desert whose tribe discovers a glass bottle dropped from an airplane, and believe it to be a gift from their gods. When Xi sets out to return the bottle to the gods, his journey becomes intertwined with that of a biologist (played by Marius Weyers), a newly hired village school teacher (Sandra Prinsloo), and a band of guerrilla terrorists.
The Gods Must Be Crazy was released by Ster-Kinekor in South Africa, where it broke box-office records, becoming the most financially successful release in the history of South Africa's film industry. The film was a commercial and critical success in other countries, including the United States, where it was distributed by 20th Century Fox, with the film's original Afrikaans dialogue being dubbed in English. Despite its success, the film attracted criticism for its depiction of race and perceived ignorance of discrimination and apartheid in South Africa.The film was followed by one official sequel, The Gods Must Be Crazy II, released by Columbia Pictures in 1989.