indieWIRE has an excellent summary of the recent Django Unchained press conference that I highly recommend reading (namely because I can’t quote it all here). Perhaps the biggest news out of the event was that there may be a Django Unchained extended release. Here’s what Quentin Tarantino had to say about a possible extended release:
“I’m not exactly sure [when I might],” Tarantino said. “I’m going to wait until the film goes around the world, does what it does. And then I’m going to make a decision. I make these scripts that are almost novels. If I had to do this whole thing over again I would have published this as a novel and done this after the fact. Maybe next time. I could do what Kevin Costner did with the expanded edition of ‘Dances with Wolves,’ and I could very well do that. Because if I put some of that in I have to change the story. But I want this version to be the story for a while.”
He also added that Harvey Weinstein wanted to split the film into two, like Kill Bill, but Tarantino held his ground.
It was a conscious decision from day 1 to not do my usual narrative tricks,” Tarantino said about not playing with the chronology of the long narrative. “This had to be Django’s journey from beginning to end. It had to be an odyssey. As Django and Schultz traverse America to get to Broomhilda. At one point Harvey was talking about splitting it up [into two films]. And I said, ‘No, it won’t work here.’ You have to follow Django’s journey to the end. There are so many emotions – there’s the action adventure, the gallow’s humor comedy that runs through it, there’s the pain of the story, there’s the catharsis, there’s the suspense, and hopefully at the end there’s cheering, if the audience isn’t cheering then I haven’t done my job. That I got that cheer at the end was the biggest issue. As far of the pain of the story I could have gone further. I wanted to show more, to show how bad it was. But I also don’t want to traumatize the audience to the point that they aren’t where I need them to be in the last reel.
NBC has published an insightful article on Django Unchained’s use of the word “nigger.” Here’s how the cast felt about its use:
Jamie Foxx on its use:
“I think that what Quentin wanted to do was really let you know how it really was [during this time] and you’re not supposed to feel good about it,” Foxx said…Foxx added, “We knew we had to go to a bad place and when I talked to black people about the film and they say they were bothered by the N-word, I said, ‘It’s supposed to, it’s supposed to bother you. Those horrific things that happened to us, is supposed to bother you.’”
“There were days when hearing that N-word over and over again would start to get a little uncomfortable and Jaime and I had these imaginary shields… we’d roll up our n-word shield,” she explained.
How Samuel L. Jackson helped coach Leonardo DiCaprio:
“When Leo goes, ‘Buddy, I’m having a tough time with these words’ and then… Samuel Jackson [told him] ‘It’s just another Tuesday for us, get over that.’ And I told Leo, if you don’t go there then we don’t have a story. So the next day he walked [and] he didn’t even speak to me,” the actor recalled.
Movieline published a great interview with Samuel L. Jackson about some of Django Unchained’s more explicit scenes that were cut from the film. Warning: Article contains spoilers!
Christoph Waltz gave an interview with Moviefone about how his acting career has taken off since Inglourious Basterds.
The Daily Mail published an article about Evergreen Plantation, which is where Django Unchained was film. Evergreen Plantation is portrayed as Calvin Candie’s home, Candyland, in the film.
A quick bit of blog news: I will be busy from now until this weekend dealing with family holiday visits. Posts here may be sporadic from now until next week, as I am not yet sure how their visits will impact my posting schedule.