Quentin Tarantino On Why He Wants To Leave The Ring TriumphantQuentin Tarantino’s imagination knows no boundaries, as he once again proves with The Hateful Eight. The cult director talks his tricks of the trade and the methods that will follow him to the grave.
THE RED BULLETIN: Your new film deals with characters who are – as the title reveals – full of hate. How do you personally deal with such destructive feelings?
QUENTIN TARANTINO: It’s funny that you ask that. I wrote this script during a time when I was both very depressed and very angry. I was in a very bad place. So I just put that hate and anger into the script and into the characters.
What were you angry about?
I don’t want to talk about it.
You seem to be riding on a wave of creativity at the moment. What keeps your creative juices flowing?
I am friendly with the writer-director Richard Kelly, who did Donnie Darko. When I did Inglorious Basterds we were at a little house party together and we were in the kitchen of the apartment and he pushed me up against the wall, and he said to me: “Quentin, I know your instincts and I know what you are thinking. You are thinking you have done this movie and you are very proud of it and now you want to go underground for a little while. And I am telling you: Do not do that. You are in a really nice place. You struck gold here and you need to mine this gold to the end. This is not the time for you to take a break. This is not the time for you to go underground. This is the time for you to find what your next thing is and write it with the same spirit in which you wrote Inglorious Basterds.” Ultimately, he was right. This is my time. This absolutely, positively is my time.
Do you find the idea generation process easy?
The most important thing is that I don’t look for them – I don’t put myself under pressure. It’s like when you go on a date. You don’t instantly think you’re going to marry that person. You just want to have a nice cup of coffee with her or enjoy a good movie, and that is the way I look at the writing process.
I also find that doing something else that is much more difficult helps. Like writing pieces on film theory and sub textual film criticism for example. This is harder for me because It’s not what I normally do as a writer. I find I have to write and rewrite and rewrite to get these pieces to where I want them to be. After doing this for a while, it is so much f**king easier the minute I start writing what I am used to. It just feels like I’m flying.
Do you not miss the time when no one was expecting anything from you?
Not at all. I like people expecting a lot from me. I see my career as a strong chain and each new one has to fit into that and not be a weak link. I’ll go to my grave with that chain and I expect you to expect a lot from me. But there could be a fun thing about having nothing but my opinions. Even back then, I think I would have liked to have been well known. It would have meant that people respected what I had to say. If I had recommended a film to you back then you probably would have shrugged it off thinking, “What does Quentin know?” But now it’s like: “Oh, Quentin likes this movie!”
Is it true that you want to stop making films at 60?
I don’t know the exact date, but I don’t want to be an old man filmmaker who doesn’t know when to leave the party. And I don’t want to f**k up my filmography with a bunch of old man’s stuff. If I want to make a movie at 62 that I feel will be a strong link in the chain, then I will. But I want to leave the ring triumphant. I want people to remember this guy in front of you. I want him to be the guy who makes the movies, not the autumn dude.