During a panel involving the writers and artists of the “Watchmen” prequel, “Before Watchmen”, Jim Lee hopped on stage and introduced the one and only Quentin Tarantino. Instead of talking more about “Before Watchmen”.
Did you think it was possible to get so many great films in one year; The Avengers, The Dark Knight Rises, The Hobbit, Skyfall and several others – well Tarantino looks to be bringing this great year in cinema to an end with a December release of Django Unchained. This latest TV spot is going to make you wet yourself with excitement, like all good trailers should.
The international trailer for Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained has been released. It’s mostly the same as the US trailer, with a few extra shots of difference, most notably, the inclusion of Samuel L. Jackson as a billed star in the film.
While the movie does look like it’s definitely going to be well crafted, I still can’t help but hold reservations on it. The James Brown soundtrack doesn’t work for me, but I understand it’s attempting a melding of the Spaghetti Western/Blaxploitation genres. What does work for me, is seeing Quentin Tarantino actually having a TRUE homage, with the final shot of the trailer, showing Jamie Foxx sitting with Franco Nero, who some may recognize as the original star of Sergio Corbucci’s Django. Even though that shot is included in the US trailer, I imagine it’ll play quite well with international crowds, where Sergio Corbucci’s name is more well-known. It would seem QT is continuing the long tradition of having a western revolving around a character named Django, even if he isn’t THE Django, from the original film. There are over 30 unofficial sequels to the original Django, as Italy has a long history of its filmmakers “borrowing” character and movie names to help a knockoff films chances at the box office. Tarantino seems to be falling right in line with this idea, only he is celebrating that character and tradition, rather than looking to make a quick buck off a name brand.
I always hold fast to the rule that you should never truly judge how good or bad a movie is until you see it, (see: Battleship), so I’m trying to stay positive with my feelings about Django Unchained. Maybe I’m just being overly negative, but Death Proof was really bad, and Inglorious Basterds was such a self-aggrandizing mess, it’s taken away the immediate optimism I used to have for Quentin Tarantino’s films. Regardless, like all of his films, I’ll end up seeing them no matter what, because for better or worse, nobody really makes movies like Tarantino. He has an undeniably unique voice, and is accomplished at doing what he sets out to do. [Ed. Note – Death Proof and Inglorious Basterds are both awesome.]
Christmas 2012, we’ll probably all get Django’d.
It’s that time again! It’s time for a new Quentin Tarantino flick (cue the applause)! After the 2009 masterpiece that we know as Inglourious Basterds, QT brings us Django Unchained, the story of a slave named Django (Jamie Foxx) who is freed by notorious bounty hunter, Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz). With hopes of making Django his deputy, Schultz begins training the man, preparing him for the biggest fight of his life; to kill Calvin Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio), a ruthless plantation owner who is in possession of Django’s wife, Broomhilda (Kerry Washington).
Well, leave your skepticism and cynicism at the door, people, because Django Unchained is really the only thing I want for Christmas (well, maybe The Great Gatsby, too). This immensely entertaining, hilarious, action-packed, and, most of all, fun trailer has me wanting more….a lot more. Quentin Tarantino seems to be in full force here after the critically acclaimed Inglourious Basterds, which was nominated for eight Oscars (winning one for Best Supporting Actor to Christoph Waltz). It seems as if the Academy has finally recognized Tarantino not only as a filmmaker, but as a genre.
I also love the anti-type casting that Tarantino has done here. It’s been a while since DiCaprio has played an out-and-out villain, while this film marks the first time that Christoph Waltz plays the good guy (a compromised protagonist at best, but I’ll take what I can get). Jamie Foxx plays the title role, and after a couple names were picked up and dropped, I feel like Tarantino has made the right choice putting Foxx in the role.
All the Tarantino-esque factors are definitely in place. The odd plot, the beautifully staged brutality, the generational gap bridging (putting a funky groove in a Civil War-era spaghetti western? I think yes), the witty dialogue, and everything in between. There’s just no way around it, Django Unchained is going to be the real deal.
Check out the official trailer right here:
Quentin Tarantino is back again with yet another scrappy yet captivating ode to genre cinema of years past, this time with his love letter to westerns, Django Unchained. After previously tackling the “Macaroni Combat” genre of WW2 films with Inglorious Basterds, he’s gone to the opposite end of old italian cinema and is diving headfirst into bringing his own personal spaghetti western for all of us. The plot is fairly simple and by the numbers: Slave gets freed by bounty hunter, bounty hunter teaches a slave to bounty hunt, slave vows to find his wife who is being held at a sadistic slave ranch, BUT slave ranch holds slave battles ran Thunderdome style by cruel slave owner! Will he get her back? You know, the usual sort of stuff you see in every western.
Great, but how do I get this shot of the gun to be an ‘homage”?
If it wasn’t apparent, the cast is typical Quentin Tarantino “Weird-at-first-but-actually-works.” style casting, with Jamie Foxx as the titular Django, Christoph Waltz as the bounty hunter, and Leonardo DiCaprio as the slave ranch owner, who is named, no kidding, Calvin Candy. That slave ranch? Candyland.
No wives until you escape the chocolate swamp!
Overall I’m excited for the movie, because westerns are great, and spaghetti westerns are always something special. It stands to reason that QT seems intent on trying really really hard to emulate Sergio Leone with his last few movies, and whether or not he’ll be successful is really up to how the whole thing comes together. I’mma homage you so hard… I’mma homage you so hard… Inglorious Basterds, while entertaining, was a movie that was definitely less than the sum of its parts, but its opening scene was classic Leone emulation, right down to the fitting Morricone soundtrack. Granted it’s easy to make anything seem epic and grandiose with that man’s score, but it was one solid, perfect nugget of gold in that movie that absolutely worked perfectly. If Django Unchained can be a whole movie like that scene, it’ll become one of the very best modern westerns of all time, if not though… well we’ll see. Who am I kidding, I know come December 25, I’ll be heading to see it with Christmas cash in tow.
I’mma homage you so hard…
Back in July we talked about Django Unchained and how Kevin Costner was set to appear. And that was accurate until recently when he dropped out and was
upgraded to replaced by Kurt Russell. Russell of course worked with QT before when he played ‘Stuntman Mike’ back in 2007…
So Russell will play ‘Ace’ the sadistic whipmaster on DiCaprio’s plantation. Sound good to me. While I have nothing against Costner, I am more of a Russell fan. I mean come on –The Thing, Big Trouble in Little China, Tombstone, Escape from New York...guy is a badass.
As far as the movie – Django Unchained – this is as stoked as I’ve been about a QT movie since walking out of Kill Bill and knowing I still had another 6 months till the 2nd part came out…
Back in May I told you about the next Tarantino movie – Django Unchained. At that time it was believed that Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds) was already locked in, and that it was rumored that star of the original movie Django – Franco Nero, would also be asked to take part. In addition, everyone just assumed that Sam Jackson would appear in his 6th Tarantino scripted movie.
Well as the production has rounded out, we’ve gotten some more names, the biggest of which was probably Leonardo DiCaprio. For the last month or so rumors have circled around DiCaprio being pegged to play the film’s villain – Calvin Candie…
“a charming but ruthless proprietor of Candyland, a despicable club and plantation in Mississippi where female slaves are exploited as sex objects and males are pitted against each other in “mandingo” style death matches. Candie is a slave’s worst nightmare and the freed slave Django must cross him in order to reclaim his wife.”
And while Leo’s name is attached to this all over the place, as far as I can figure, it isn’t actually official yet. If it does happen though, I think DiCaprio would be great. I’d love to see him in a villain role, and he has a real desire to work with the best directors in the industry with all the Scorsese movies in recent years, and Christopher Nolan’s Inception last summer. This guy is, in my opinion, one of the top actors in Hollywood today. As DeNiro, Pacino, Hackman, and Hoffman all ease into ‘Grandpa Roles’, the next generation of great actors is really starting to emerge, and Leo is at the forefront. However, like I said, he’s not confirmed yet to my knowledge.
Another big name QT was trying to wrangle in for the project was Mr. Blockbuster himself – Will Smith. This was the focus of our article in May, and now we’ve got an answer from the Fresh Prince: No.
So, once Will Smith (against the advice of everyone) turned down the lead in Quentin Tarantino’s newest movie, the search for ‘Django’ began anew. With Smith out, QT reportedly talked to Idris Elba, Terrence Howard, and Chris Tucker all before ultimately offering the role to Smith’s Ali co-star; Jamie Foxx, who has accepted.
Foxx is coming off of an extremely entertaining role in Horrible Bosses (which was awesome), where he played a character named ‘Motherf#*ker Jones’ and will now play a freed slave out for revenge. This should prove to be Foxx’s most talked about role of since Ray.
In addition to Jamie Foxx, it’s recently been announced that Kevin Costner will also join the cast. That means that Costner should be slated for a huge year in 2012 between this and his role as Pa Kent in Man of Steel. According to Deadline, Costner will play ‘Ace Woody’, the wicked plantation underboss who trains slaves to fight to the death.
Jamie Foxx’s Ray co-star Kerry Washington has also been tapped to appear as Django’s wife, and the motivation for his entire drive in the movie.
In addition, if you can believe the “always dependable” IMDb, Treat Williams (who we mentioned back in May) and Keith Carradine are both in the running to be included as well. Carradine is of course the younger brother of David Carradine, who was best known to QT fans as ‘Bill’. Now, while I’m pretty impartial towards Williams (even though I loved ‘Things to Do in Denver When You’re Dead’), I really liked Carradine in his run on Dexter and I think he’d be a really under-rated addition to what’s shaping up to be one of the best casts of 2012…