Quentin Tarantino Shops Inglorious Bastards Around - Updated!
Quentin Tarantino's promising next production, Inglorious Bastards, is on a roll. Hot off the news that the hefty script was finally finished, we receive word from Nikki Finke at Deadline Hollywood that the film not only has a producer on board (Lawrence Bender) but that Tarantino is shopping the script around, and surprisingly not to the The Weinstein Company, whom the auteur seems so far to have been domestically married. TWC has been involved in Tarantino's haymaker films for some time, including Pulp Fiction and the Kill Bill series. The independent studio is also responsible for the painfully unsuccessful Grindhouse double feature of last year. Is this a good move for Tarantino and his film?
While I think it bodes well, the shopping of the script might not all be creative. Harvey Weinstein, in fact, will potentially fulfill his regular producing role on the film. The fact that TWC is not financing the flick is more telling of the studio's health. Despite being privately held, the near two-year-old studio has investors who aren't exactly pleased; one party, in fact, plainly stated that 2007 had "been a disappointing one." Adding to this is Harvey's widely reported big-media dreams that have seemingly taken him away from the art of movie-making. His brother and partner, Bob, recently told him, "Halston and all that sounds cool and everything, but you're a filmmaker, and people expect that of you." Clearly one half of the Weinstein brand needs a bit of realignment and thankfully Tarantino knows that as well.
Leaving the financing to another studio will certainly prove interesting for Tarantino's long-awaited film. Warner Brothers, Universal, Sony and Paramount are reportedly all contenders for the script. And considering the title and unique subject matter - "a spaghetti western meets World War II film that's an homage to 1967's The Dirty Dozen" - Inglorious Bastards will definitely present some marketing challenges. The Weinstein's missed on the marketing of Tarantino's last project, so the change in the formula in and of itself breeds hope. There's no telling if this will be a trend for future Tarantino projects or if this is a harbinger for further negative turns at TWC. But, for me, it bolsters the promise of Inglorious Bastards quite a bit. What do you think? Does not having the Weinsteins as financial backers mean good things for Inglorious Bastards?
Update! Apparently Nikki Finke also reports that Tarantino is attempting to lure Brad Pitt into starring in the film as well. She confirms that they're talking and had a meeting, but that he is not at all actually cast in the film yet. Pitt in a Tarantino film - good move or bad?
Update #2! As is often the case with news, things can change that quickly. Or, either Nikki Finke or Hollywood Reporter is wrong. THR is reporting today that despite news we brought you to the contrary yesterday, Tarantino is, in fact, setting up Inglorious Bastards with the Weinsteins. The independent studio will "co-finance the film, distribute it domestically and oversee production and worldwide marketing." I guess Bastards now falls into the category of "more of the same," so I worry about the marketing efforts this time around. Let's hope lessons were learned. Also announced today is that production will begin in October, since Tarantino wants to submit Bastards to Cannes next year. Considering the accelerated schedule, the Weinsteins are apparently looking to join forces with another "major" studio to pull it off and round out the financing. If you take into account the tone of the original article, do you think Tarantino sticking with the Weinsteins is a good or bad move?