When Quentin Tarantino’s screenplay for “The Hateful Eight” leaked on the web back in 2015, the writer-director was so furious that he almost thought of abandoning the project altogether. While Tarantino would eventually go through with the production, which is now a Golden Globe winner and probable Oscar nominee, at the time he decided to mount a live stage reading of the script instead. The move turned out to make more sense than audiences could have known, as “The Hateful Eight” has a limited use of space (almost all of it takes place trapped inside a haberdashery in Wyoming) and very minimal action (characters spouting lengthy verbal diatribes with the usual Tarantino violence spliced in here and there).
Even when watching the film version, which is epically presented in Ultra 70mm Panavision, the film still gives off a theatrical vibe, with many pundits even noting that it could work perfectly as a stage play. Now it seems that Tarantino does not disagree with such sentiments, and he has informally announced tentative plans to bring “The Hateful Eight” over to the stage.
Speaking about his plans at length with The Wrap following the Golden Globes, Tarantino said, “Harvey actually tried to talk me into doing it as a play first. He said, ‘Let’s just say this out loud before we commit to doing the movie.’ And I was like, ‘Look, I could. But I like the mystery aspect and the mystery aspect will really only work in the movie. And I have the 70mm and I have the snow. So let me do that.'”
While it seems like this is something Tarantino wants to actively pursue, he also admits that he hasn’t had any free time to work any of this out. “I’m just waiting for this [awards] season to be over so I can write it,” Tarantino said. “I gotta put myself there and write it for this.”
It’ll be interesting to see if this plan ever comes to fruition since this wouldn’t be the first time Tarantino spoke passionately about a project that never got off the ground (i.e. “Vega Brothers Prequel” or “Kill Bill, Vol. 3”). However, it is always a treat to see such a fun and adventurous filmmaker like Tarantino try out different mediums. A stage version wouldn’t be the first time he flirted with the theater, either; he made his Broadway debut almost 20 years ago with a revival of “Wait Until Dark,” starring Marisa Tomei and Stephen Lang.