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Villain Overview

Faye: Jack, what do you wanna use [the film] for, a porno film? Stupid man!
Alan: That's not a bad idea, how 'bout Jungle Jollies?!
~ Alan Yates ignoring his girlfriend Faye Daniels' objections to filming themselves raping a native girl.
Here we are at the end of the world in human history. Things like this happen all the time in the jungle. It's survival of the fittest. In the jungle it's the daily violence of the strong overcoming the weak.
~ Alan Yates preparing to burn down a native village and pin the massacre on another tribe.

Alan Yates is the main antagonist of the extremely controversial 1980 Italian exploitation film Cannibal Holocaust. Despite being the main protagonist (and at first assumed to be a victim), he was in fact completely unsympathetic and the polar opposite of Harold, and documentary footage revealed the truth about what he and his crew mates were really doing, as well as the disgusting and unscrupulous monster he was.

He was portrayed by Carl Gabriel Yorke, who also played the part of the Kromagg Leader in the sci-fi show Sliders.

Biography

Alan Yates often displayed signs of sadism, as seen here when he is filmed grinning upon finding an impaled corpse.

Alan was a director who toured the world alongside his crew (made up of three friends). While outwardly a normal film-maker, Yates was actually ruthless and racist with signs of sociopathy; often he would film as he and his crew deliberately created atrocities so as to make a profit from the footage. He would film such unforgivable acts as rape, murder and torture with the aim of becoming famous - he also viewed the natives as "monkeys" and horribly abused them all.

Alan and his crew however would make a fatal mistake when they attempted to cause mayhem in the Amazon jungle - attacking a group of peaceful villagers and forcing them into huts which they proceeded to burn, filming while the terrified natives tried to escape (some had burned to death): after destroying the village Alan and his crew moved on to track down the mysterious "tree people" - a tribe that was said to engage in cannibalism.

Alan and his crew set fire to an entire village, killing many innocent indigenous people in the process.

Knowing that the tribe were not aggressive and would only attack if sufficiently provoked, Alan and his crew captured a woman from the tribe and gang-raped her, filming the scene - at this point the Alan's girlfriend (Faye Daniels) grew angry at the group for wasting film and called them all "bastards" - trying to fight them off but simply being tossed aside.

Later on, Alan films as the woman they had raped is found impaled to a wooden pole as punishment by the "savage" tribe (though it is heavily implied this is a staged atrocity by Yates and not the actual tribe, meaning he not only raped the woman but had her impaled off-camera, to show how "brutal" the tribe was). Alan and his crew are remorseless and even smirk (aside from Faye, who is still displeased with Alan's "reckless" behavior).

Alan Yates' death.

The "tree people" had enough of Alan and his crew for slaughtering them and soon ambushed the filmmakers, managing to spear one of Alan's friends (Jack) - who Alan simply shoots while recording as the tribe castrate him and tear his body apart before devouring him. Mark then films as Faye is captured by the frenzied tribe: this is the first time Alan actually shows concern and is even willing to forget about the film to save Faye, but is convinced to follow them and keep filming. Alan and Mark watch as Faye is gang-raped by the tribesmen and beheaded.

Finally Alan meets his own demise when the tribe swarm him, the camera falls to the ground alongside Alan's blood-covered face, moments before the footage cuts out.

After viewing the footage the directors decide to have the footage burned and the movie ends with one of the scientists (who had viewed the footage) asking himself who the true savages were.

Personality

Alan Yates was an arrogant, racist, xenophobic, violent, and sociopathic person who saw other humans as little more than victims to be filmed in order to earn him fame as a director. His documentaries were almost always staged and he had no problem in paying people to commit atrocities or engaging in such actions himself if he felt it would "improve" his documentaries - he was also extremely sadistic and treacherous, as he was seen grinning and laughing during scenes of intense violence (including rape and murder).

Once Alan obtained the footage of his crimes, he would edit it to incriminate other groups whilst reframing him as a neutral observer. For example, whilst burning the Yacumo's village, Alan claimed it was an attack from the Yanamo and planned to remove the parts of the video showing he killed the villagers. Similarly he was seen laughing at the corpse of a Yanamo woman until Mark informed him that the camera was on, at which point Alan assumed a serious tone, claiming the Yanamo killed her and that he could never imagine such senseless cruelty as the evil film-maker stifled another giggle.

Alan Yates was also insane, as he happily videotaped the deaths of his own friends instead of trying to flee (though he did show objection to Faye's death at first, until Mark convinced him to continue) - his obsession with bloodlust would be his demise, and ironically his final victim would be himself.

Trivia

  • Due to his horrible villainy, even the actor who portrayed him, Carl Gabriel Yorke, hated him. Yorke was uncomfortable with the film's violent tone and taboo subject matter. Yorke was originally supposed to kill a pig for the movie, but Carl refused to shoot an innocent animal, resulting in another actor being ordered to do the deed. Yorke even failed to do a monologue out of horror after hearing the pig's dying squeals.
  • According to the film's official page, Alan is six feet tall and weighs one-hundred and sixty pounds.
  • Also, according to the film's official page, which is written from an in-universe perspective, Alan publicly claimed to be an anti-war activist, which makes him even more of a hypocrite and fraud than he already is in the film.
  • Alan is a foil to Monroe, his polar opposite in the film. While Monroe is a genuine humble pacifist who treated the Yanamo tribe with genuine friendliness and respect to their way of life, Alan is a hypocritical fraud, whom believed he was master over the Yanamo, seeing the many tribes within the jungle as things to be killed and terrorized for fame.
  • He is very similar to Mike Logan from Cannibal Ferox, which relates to Cannibal Holocaust, sharing many similarities even though they are set in different universes (this is due to the fact Cannibal Ferox was designed to play on Cannibal Holocaust's infamy). Mike shares Alan's role as a sociopath who abuses natives, but unlike Alan, Mike was also portrayed as a drug dealer.

External Links

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Ya̧nomamö Tribe

Shamatari Tribe

Alan Yates' Crew
Alan Yates | Jack Anders | Mark Tomaso | Faye Daniels