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First Look: Is Tarantino's next a cowboy movie?

May 06, 2011 13:16 IST

Quentin Tarantino. Bottom: The first page of his new scriptLast Friday, a picture of the front page of Quentin Tarantino's new script hit the Internet -- instantly driving the film-loving world insane. The film is called Django Unchained, and all kind of exciting details about the film have hit the air since. Here's a quick recap of it all:

1. The old rumours doing the rounds of the web said that Christoph Waltz, the awesome actor who won an Oscar playing Col Hans Landa in Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds, would star in QT's next, along with Franco Nero, who played Django in the classic Django movies. Unconfirmed buzz said that the film would be a spaghetti western.

2. But nope. QT muse Uma Thurman excitedly gushed that QT's next would be a twist on the genre, called a Southern. A phrase which led us to discover a Quentin interview from 2007 where he talks about his spaghetti set in America's Deep South.

'I want to explore something that really hasn't been done,' he had told the Telegraph. 'I want to do movies that deal with America's horrible past with slavery and stuff but do them like spaghetti westerns, not like big issue movies. I want to do them like they're genre films, but they deal with everything that America has never dealt with because it's ashamed of it, and other countries don't really deal with because they don't feel they have the right to. But I can deal with it all right, and I'm the guy to do it. So maybe that's the next mountain waiting for me.'

3. Then, a couple of days ago, Indiewire quoted a source who had apparently read the script, as saying, 'Django is a freed slave, who, under the tutelage of a German bounty hunter (Christoph Waltz) becomes a bad-ass bounty hunter himself, and after assisting Waltz in taking down some bad guys for profit, is helped by Waltz in tracking down his slave wife and liberating her from an evil plantation owner. And that doesn't even half begin to cover it! This film deals with racism as I've rarely seen it handled in a Hollywood film. While it's 100 percent pure popcorn and revenge flick, it is pure genius in the way it takes on the evil slave owning south. Think of what he did with the Nazis in Inglorious and you'll get a sense of what he's doing with slave owners and slave overseers in this one.' Wow.

4. Anne Thompson of Indiewire then confirmed with Tarantino's agency WME that the director's next film is indeed called Django Unchained, and that he has handed in the final draft to The Weinstein Company. The film apparently salutes not just from the old Django films, but also from Takashi Miike's loopy but fun Sukiyaki Western Django, where Tarantino himself played an old gunslinger (pictured). The film also takes cues from Elmore Leonard's 40 Lashes Less One -- QT regulars will remember that the director's only adaptation was taking Leonard's Rum Punch and turning it into the underappreciated Jackie Brown.

5. The casting is open as of right now, with the lead role of Django yet to be announced. Franco Nero had let slip a few other cast names, like Treat Williams, Keith Carradine and Waltz, but apparently Quentin's looking to make this film a massive one and grab a lot of top-shelf Hollywood talent.

6. Nikki Finke of Deadline Hollywood then updated that the film is likely to begin shooting in the fall, or even late summer, and that Pulp Fiction producer Stacey Sher will be taking on the new film.

7. Finally, Harry Knowles of aintitcool.net has apparently read the script. He tweeted afterwards, sending fanboys everywhere into paroxysms of envious ecstasy, 'Django Unchained is an operatic southernÂ… this is my favorite QT script. & I've read them all. This I absolutely love at every level.'

It's immensely exciting, and I -- like most of you out there -- can't wait to hear more about this project. And as a fanboy, I can only pray that Tarantino finally gets the legendary Ennio Morricone to compose new music for him. Oh yeah.

Raja Sen in Mumbai