Quentin Tarantino has one of the most recognizable filmographies of any current living director. Any random person has seen at least two to three of Tarantino’s films, and those who have yet to see any, can at least name two of the director’s titles: the easiest being Kill Bill: Volume 1 & 2. At this point in his career, his films are iconic to the evolution of pop culture.
Though directing is his passion, Tarantino has no desire to beef up his filmography with more films than needed. The director sat down with Playboy and revealed that he doesn’t want to be a “old-time director”:
“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 I am all about my filmography, and one bad film fucks up three good ones … When directors get out-of-date, it’s not pretty.”
While his point-of-view may have some credibility to it, there are a number of directors who continue making films way into their 60s and 70s: Stephen Spielberg (65), George Lucas (68), Martin Scorsese (69), Francis Ford Coppola (73). While Tarantino never hinted at a certain age, imagine if these guys had stopped their filmmaking efforts at age 55; we’d be without the beautiful cinematic experience of Hugo, Shutter Island, Lincoln, War Horse, The Adventures of Tintin, etc.
So how old is Tarantino? He’s just the young age of 49! Ok, maybe it’s not young to some people… Tarantino, don’t retire! Sure, 50 may be haunting him in his sleep, but with age comes more experience, which only means more stories. I’m sure that brain of his is full of ridiculously memorable characters. He currently has seven full-length films under his belt, and he has no problem ending at film #10:
“I’m on a journey that needs to have an end and not be about me trying to get another job,” he said. “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.”
Several actors were in talks to join the cast of Tarantino’s Django Unchained. And several others, including Joseph Gordon-Levit, Kurt Russell and Sacha Baron Cohen, were once involved but left due to scheduling conflicts. Despite all of this, the one actor whose name was attached to controversy was Will Smith‘s.
Tarantino recently revealed that he had considered Idris Elba, Chris Tucker, Terrence Howard, M.K. Williams and Tyrese for the title role. What a list! Of course the role went to comedian-turned-singer-turned-actor Jamie Foxx. Though Tarantino enjoyed meeting with Smith as they talked about the role, he admitted there’s no bad blood between the two:
“He didn’t walk away from it because he was scared of the material. It just wasn’t 100 per cent right, and we didn’t have time to try to make it that way [...] We left with me saying, ‘Look, I’m going to see other people.’ He said, ‘Let me just see how I feel, and if you don’t find anybody, let’s talk again.’ And then I found my guy.”
So the rumors swarming the idea that Smith turned down the role because playing a slave was beneath him are all false. He was not uncomfortable with the role, nor did he not take the role because of fear that it would taint his “good boy image.”
So what does all of this mean? Well, I counted and Django Unchained will be Tarantino’s eighth film. Kill Bill: Volume 3 has been announced. Ending the franchise in a trilogy seems to be a logical solution, and that would be his ninth. Meaning his tenth film has yet to be announced, though I’m sure he’s got some idea of what’s to come.
The day Tarantino admits “x” is his last film will be a sad day for movie goers. It’s his life, lets just hope he ends his directing and writing chapter with several knockout films! Here’s what Tarantino had to say about life after film:
“If I had a wife, I would probably be more polite. She would make me write thank-you notes, which I won’t do on my own. I wouldn’t be such a caveman. If I want to live in Paris for a year, what the fuck? 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.”