Katanga's father was an engineer aboard a Liberian ship, the Golden Sun, where Simon was introduced to the ways of the sea as a cabin steward. He eventually worked his way up to first mate of the Bantu Wind, and took over the ship when the previous captain was mortally wounded in a gunfight during a smuggling run.
In 1936, Katanga was contacted by Sallah, who was seeking secret passage for his friends, Indiana Jones and Marion Ravenwood, and their cargo — the Ark of the Covenant, stolen from the Nazis. Katanga agreed to provide passage from Egypt across the Mediterranean, and loaded the cargo and passengers at night and set out, even giving up his quarters to Jones and Ravenwood.
The next morning, somewhere between Egypt and Sicily, the Bantu Wind was ordered to stop by a surfaced German U-Boat. On the bridge, Katanga told an alerted Jones to hide. When his ship was boarded by René Belloq and his Nazi companions, Katanga surrendered to protect his ship and crew from the well-armed soldiers, and gave up the Ark. As a captured Ravenwood attempted to strike Dietrich, Katanga grabbed her and appealed to the Nazis to take the Ark but leave her, claiming that she had value where they were headed - but Jones, who did not hold such value, had been killed and thrown overboard. Dietrich refused and seized Ravenwood, but Belloq took custody of her instead. Acting without defiance, Katanga allowed Ravenwood and the Ark to be turned over to the Nazis, even after being labeled a savage by Dietrich because of his black skin. As soon as the Nazis were back on their submarine, Katanga ordered his men to find Jones, still hidden on the ship. While watching the Germans depart, Katanga stood on the side of his ship when one of the pirates reported to him that Jones could not be found. Ordering his man to search again, the pirate looked across to the German U-Boat and pointed out Jones to Katanga, who saluted the archaeologist.
Later that year, Katanga was reunited with Indy at the Panama City jail, where Katanga was being held on rum smuggling charges. Indy arranged for bail and chartered the Bantu Wind for an expedition to the Aleutian Islands, where Indy suspected to find an ancient Chinese temple, predating the Eskimos. At the temple, Katanga and Indy were confronted by a crew of pirates led by Emerelda Vasquez. Emerelda commandeered the Bantu Wind, stole the Chinese treasure and demolished the temple, leaving Indy, Katanga and the ship's crew for dead. Katanga's team was able to sneak aboard and assume control of Emerelda's submarine, and at the end of the naval battle that ensued, Katanga was once again captain of the Bantu Wind.
Personality and traitsEdit
Captain Katanga was fond of smoking cigars and kept a stash of alcohol in his cabin. He was well-liked and respected by his crew, as it was only his order that prevented them from resisting the Nazis when they boarded the ship. He also kept a cool head and did not rise to insults, even when Dietrich racially abused him. He became a good friend of Indiana Jones, as demonstrated when he protected Jones from the Nazis by stating that he had killed the archaeologist because of him being of no value to him.
Behind the scenesEdit
- Raiders of the Lost Ark (First appearance)
- Raiders of the Lost Ark novel
- Raiders of the Lost Ark comic
- Raiders of the Lost Ark storybook
- The Further Adventures of Indiana Jones – "The Sea Butchers: Island of Peril!"
- The Further Adventures of Indiana Jones – "The Sea Butchers: Death on Dark Waters"
- LEGO Indiana Jones: The Original Adventures (Non-canonical appearance)
- LEGO Indiana Jones 2: The Adventure Continues (Non-canonical appearance)