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Tarantino talks to Playboy about casting Django Unchained, when he will retire, artistic drug use, and more!

Nov. 15, 2012by:

Django Unchained - Tarantino poster

DJANGO UNCHAINED is one of the most anticipated movies on this site, and indeed probably the cinema-going world over.  A new release from Tarantino just kind of does that to people.  And as part of his promotional efforts for the film, Tarantino did an interview with Playboy that goes into all sorts of fun truths and hypotheticals, from casting the title role to getting high while working to his ideal wife to when he might retire.  It's a fascinating sneak peak into the mind of one of cinema's most distinct directors, and you can check out the excerpted interview below. 

Or you can pick up the December issue of Playboy on November 20th.  Or both. 

DJANGO UNCHAINED is... coming soon... to a cinema near you.  December 25th, to be precise.

On casting: “I met six different actors and had extensive meetings with all of them, and I went in-depth on all of their work.  Idris Elba, Chris Tucker, Terrence Howard, M.K. Williams ["Boardwalk Empire"], Tyrese [Gibson]. They all appreciated the material, and I was going to put them through the paces, make them go off against one another and kind of put up an obstacle course. And then I met Jamie and realized I didn’t need to do that.  He was the cowboy… Forget the fact that he has his own horse — and that is actually his horse in the movie. He’s from Texas; he understands. …He understood what it’s like to be thought of as an ‘other.’”

On what happened with Will Smith taking on the title role: “We spent quite a few hours together over a weekend when he was in New York doing MEN IN BLACK III... I think half the process was an excuse for us to hang out and spend time with one anothe.  It just wasn’t 100 percent right, and we didn’t have time to try to make it that way.”

On how Calvin Candie was originally written for someone else: “I don’t want to say who, simply because when I finished the script, I realized they were a little older than I wanted the character to be. That’s a problem I have. I’ll be thinking about somebody and not take into account that I’m thinking of them from 20 years ago.”

On his feelings about Calvin Candie as a character: “I hated Candie, and I normally like my villains no matter how bad they are. …what I’m always trying to do…is get you to kind of like these guys, despite on-screen evidence that you shouldn’t. Despite the things they do and say and despite their agenda. I also like making people laugh at f**ked-up shit.”

On drug use: “I wouldn’t do anything impaired while making a movie. I don’t so much write high, but say you’re thinking about a musical sequence. You smoke a joint, you put on some music, you listen to it and you come up with some good ideas.…I don’t need pot to write, but it’s kind of cool.”

Quentin Tarantino Playboy 1

On rewriting history while retaining contextual truth: “You turn on a movie and know how things are going to go in most films. Every once in a while films don’t play by the rules. It’s liberating when you don’t know what’s happening next.…I thought, What about telling these kinds of stories my way — rough and tough but gratifying at the end?”

On the qualities of an ideal Playmate/wife/partner: “If I want to live in Paris for a year, what the f—? I can. I don’t have to arrange anything; I can just do it. If there is an actor or director I want to get obsessed with and study their films for the next 12 days, I can do that. The perfect person would be a Playmate who would enjoy that.”

On what happened in Aurora, CO: “I think that guy was a nut. He went in there to kill a bunch of people because he knew there would be a lot of people there… That’s no different from a guy going into a McDonald’s and shooting up people at lunchtime because he knows a lot of people will be there.”

On matching the quality of his early films: “I want there to be anticipation. I was actually quite proud when I read that  DJANGO is one of the most anticipated movies coming out this year. It’s a black Western. Where’s the anticipation coming from? I guess a lot of it is me. That’s pretty f—ing awesome.”

And for all you fans out there, here's the sad bit about when Tarantino might quit: “I just don’t want to be an old-man filmmaker. I want to stop at a certain point. Directors don’t get better as they get older. Usually the worst films in their filmography are those last four at the end. I am all about my filmography, and one bad film f—s up three good ones.…When directors get out-of-date, it’s not pretty. I’m on a journey that needs to have an end and not be about me trying to get another job. I want this artistic journey to have a climax. I want to work toward something. You stop when you stop, but in a fanciful world, 10 movies in my filmography would be nice. I’ve made seven. If I have a change of heart, if I come up with a new story, I could come back. But if I stop at 10, that would be okay as an artistic statement.”

Amanda Streich

Playboy's 2012 Playmate of the Month Amanda Streich

Extra Tidbit: Sounds like someone isn't a fan of Clint Eastwood's recent output...
Source: Playboy

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11:10AM on 11/16/2012

" I guess a lot of it is me."

Um...it's entirely him. They could have cast anyone in this and the hype would be the same because QT's roles make the actors and never the other way around.
Oh and maybe he's changed his habits but I know he used to blaze constantly when writing as long as it wasn't his own stuff. ;)
Um...it's entirely him. They could have cast anyone in this and the hype would be the same because QT's roles make the actors and never the other way around.
Oh and maybe he's changed his habits but I know he used to blaze constantly when writing as long as it wasn't his own stuff. ;)
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2:42AM on 11/16/2012
He's mentioned the "10 movies" thing before, hasn't he? It makes sense at least - if he feels like he's getting old, and this is his 7th, then having 3 movies left is probably about right. I don't think he's assumptions are true though. He'd be cherry picking to say all directors get worse when they age, and I see no reason why it would apply to someone as self-aware as him anyway.
He's mentioned the "10 movies" thing before, hasn't he? It makes sense at least - if he feels like he's getting old, and this is his 7th, then having 3 movies left is probably about right. I don't think he's assumptions are true though. He'd be cherry picking to say all directors get worse when they age, and I see no reason why it would apply to someone as self-aware as him anyway.
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8:08PM on 11/15/2012
Ha, I love how he is disillusioned into thinking he is still this young filmmaker. News flash Tarantino, you are 50 years old, you ARE an old man director. Get over it and keep doing what you love.
Ha, I love how he is disillusioned into thinking he is still this young filmmaker. News flash Tarantino, you are 50 years old, you ARE an old man director. Get over it and keep doing what you love.
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3:57PM on 11/15/2012
QT retiring? Thats very depressing to hear.Extra Tidbit:its not about clint,its about Billy wilder and some old directors who made bad movies in their last phase
QT retiring? Thats very depressing to hear.Extra Tidbit:its not about clint,its about Billy wilder and some old directors who made bad movies in their last phase
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+0
3:54PM on 11/15/2012
My favorite director.
My favorite director.
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3:32PM on 11/15/2012

Elba!

DAMN! It would've been AWESOME if Idris Elba had gotten the role! I like Foxx enough but I feel like Elba could add a real ruggedness to the role. But, obviously thats all just guesswork at this point, Foxx could still totally kill it.
DAMN! It would've been AWESOME if Idris Elba had gotten the role! I like Foxx enough but I feel like Elba could add a real ruggedness to the role. But, obviously thats all just guesswork at this point, Foxx could still totally kill it.
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+5
2:30PM on 11/15/2012

wonder

if he only did this interview with the promise of being able to suck some Playboy Bunny Feet
if he only did this interview with the promise of being able to suck some Playboy Bunny Feet
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-1
2:21PM on 11/15/2012

Wait wut?

Chris Tucker was actually being considered? So glad that never happened.
Chris Tucker was actually being considered? So glad that never happened.
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12:23PM on 11/15/2012
dbl post
dbl post
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11:38AM on 11/15/2012
At the rate he works, wasn't going to be 20 or 30 films anyways. As far as the extra tidbit, i know kidding, but doubt that was in any way directed at eastwood
At the rate he works, wasn't going to be 20 or 30 films anyways. As far as the extra tidbit, i know kidding, but doubt that was in any way directed at eastwood
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11:35AM on 11/15/2012

Tarantino's retirement = Dark Day

I agree with everything Tarantino says, and I admire the man for wanting to retire on his terms, but man, I'm hoping there's more than 10 movies in his filmography by the time he hangs it up. In today's day and age of filmmaking, there are increasingly less and less films tat come out where they are event movies just because of the director, and Tarantino fits that bill. He is such a distinct, unique and original voice that he could literally make a film about anything at all, and I'd go check
I agree with everything Tarantino says, and I admire the man for wanting to retire on his terms, but man, I'm hoping there's more than 10 movies in his filmography by the time he hangs it up. In today's day and age of filmmaking, there are increasingly less and less films tat come out where they are event movies just because of the director, and Tarantino fits that bill. He is such a distinct, unique and original voice that he could literally make a film about anything at all, and I'd go check it out. He's one of the few "event directors" left out there. Here's hoping he revises his final number to somewhere around 15.
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10:58AM on 11/15/2012
I admire that a man like Tarantino sees himself as somewhat responsible for delivering the goods to an audience. He's not the easiest guy to like watching him in interviews, but he does tend to make movies that people go see and then later celebrate. And his directed movies -- usually -- seem to be passion projects. I imagine the day he stops writing is the day he stops making movies, since he particularly prides himself on being a writer-director.
I admire that a man like Tarantino sees himself as somewhat responsible for delivering the goods to an audience. He's not the easiest guy to like watching him in interviews, but he does tend to make movies that people go see and then later celebrate. And his directed movies -- usually -- seem to be passion projects. I imagine the day he stops writing is the day he stops making movies, since he particularly prides himself on being a writer-director.
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10:08AM on 11/15/2012
ET: Why not? The 4 bad Eastwood films are still a few years away :D

As for his end of career statement, I tend to agree. When you feel you have nothing creative to say anymore, you should stop, rather than accept any job offer. But that moment is still 3+ movies away.
ET: Why not? The 4 bad Eastwood films are still a few years away :D

As for his end of career statement, I tend to agree. When you feel you have nothing creative to say anymore, you should stop, rather than accept any job offer. But that moment is still 3+ movies away.
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