While some filmmakers can difficult, evasive or coy during interviews, Quentin Tarantino has always been more than happy to generously share his thoughts with journalists and fans. It’s no surprise that his recent interview for Playboy has already yielded some interesting nuggets about his own career aspirations and the casting process for the lead in “Django Unchained.” Over at Deadline, Mike Fleming — who conducted the interview for the lad mag — has posted some outtakes from his conversation with Tarantino, and of course, there are more interseting nuggets from the filmmaker.
Following the tepid reception to “Grindhouse,” Tarantino admits his confidence was a bit shaken, but reveals both Tony Scott and Steven Spielberg were there to offer support and advice. “I called Tony and Steven Spielberg. They said a lot of the same things, how fortunate I was to do what I do, and that sometimes you win and sometimes you lose,” he said. “One of the things Spielberg said that was cool was, he goes, ‘Well, Quentin, you’ve been pretty lucky. You’ve had a success, to one degree or another, every time out. It’s almost like playing the game and not paying for it. All right? Today you paid for it. And it can make you a more well-rounded person, having done that. But the other thing though is the next time you have a success it’s going to be even much more sweeter because you learned what it’s like to have the cards fall the other way.’ My confidence was rocked, but in this way: instead of taking a job, or writing something new, I went back to ‘Inglourious Basterds,’ old material that I knew was good. I said, let me solve it now, quit fucking around, and just solve it.”
When a filmmaker is down and out, even if temporarily, a blockbuster studio gig can usually right the ship, and Tarantino reveals that once the blood was in the water, his phone started ringing. “…after ‘Grindhouse’ flopped, I actually started getting like aggressive offers for some big Hollywood hot project movies,” he said. “And I felt like, I see where they’re coming from. They’re thinking I’m a little insecure right now and that I’m going to want to get back on the horse right away, in a solid situation. And I was a little insecure, but I didn’t quite bite.”
So what kind of stuff was floated his way? “They did get in touch with me in the very early, early, early, early stages of ‘Green Lantern,’ and a couple of other things,” he said. “They’ve learned. I actually got things unmade because I showed a little interest in them, but never quite go all the way, and they don’t want to move on. I did that with ‘The Man From UNCLE‘ every time somebody new got the rights. They’ve probably learned not to call me, they know I write my own shit.”
So hey studios, why not let QT take over a blockbuster franchise from scratch? Remember how “Green Lantern” turned out? It couldn’t get any worse. Anyway, next month brings a bounty of QT for fans with, of course, “Django Unchained,” the one night only screenings of “Reservoir Dogs” and “Pulp Fiction,” and the “Tarantino XX” box set. And from the latter, Rolling Stone has a clip with Tarantino explaining the influence of Elmore Leonard (author of “Rum Punch” which became “Jackie Brown“) on his filmmaking. Watch below.