Pam Grier reflects on Jackie Brown

Pam Grier Jackie Brown

The great Pam Grier has had a storied career, proving to be one of the most badass actresses of her generation. A blaxploitation icon and landmark action star–no matter what Jennifer Lawrence may think–Pam Grier’s mark on ‘70s cinema is undeniable. So is the power of her performance in Quentin Tarantino’s Jackie Brown.

In a new interview, Pam Grier reflected on more than five decades in the business. One notable highlight was her 1997 comeback in Jackie Brown. Grier noted that she discovered a new way to approach acting, with the help of her director. “When you work with Quentin, he takes you to a place maybe you haven’t discovered. It was another level of maturity, not only in me, but my performance and then his feminine side, and how he saw me in the frames of his work, how I stood, how I walked, how I talked.”

Pam Grier also said the cool, calm and collected demeanor of Jackie Brown was essential to both the character and the film. “That’s the thing about acting, where you’ll see characters going after the bad guy and they’re grimacing, they’re angry. I’m like, ‘No, chill.’ The most powerful thing is you’re cool and no one sees you angry all the time—that’s some form of filmmaking. But Quentin didn’t want that. The movie would have been over in 10 minutes.”

Pam Grier earned awards buzz for Jackie Brown, including a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy and a Screen Actors Guild nod for Female Actor in a Leading Role. She lost both to eventual Best Actress Oscar winner Helen Hunt for As Good as It Gets.

The life and career of Pam Grier will be the focus of season four of Turner Classic Movies’ podcast The Plot Thickens. “Here Comes Pam” tells “the story of Pam Grier as only she can tell it, about how she rose to become the queen of Blaxploitation and Hollywood’s first female action star.” Season one focused on director Peter Bogdanovich, while seasons two and three spotlighted the disastrous production of The Bonfire of the Vanities and unmatched legacy of Lucille Ball, respectively.

Pam Grier has recently signed on to star in the zombie apocalypse horror comedy As We Know It, as well as a prequel to 2019’s Pet Sematary. Grier is no stranger to horror, appearing in titles like Scream Blacula Scream, Ghosts of Mars and Bones.

What are your thoughts on Jackie Brown? Where does it rank in your list of favorite Tarantino movies?

Source: The A.V. Club

About the Author

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Mathew is an East Coast-based writer and film aficionado who has been working with periodically since 2006. When he’s not writing, you can find him on Letterboxd or at a local brewery. If he had the time, he would host the most exhaustive The Wonder Years rewatch podcast in the universe.