Quentin Tarantino doesn’t care if people don’t enjoy his films.
The famed director said as much in a new interview with author Bret Easton Ellis for the latest issue of the New York Times’ Style magazine.
In the interview, Tarantino also took on black critics of his 2012 spaghetti Western film Django Unchained, telling Ellis that it shouldn’t matter that he wrote and directed a movie about slavery as a white man.
“If you’ve made money being a critic in black culture in the last 20 years, you have to deal with me,” said Tarantino, whose latest film, The Hateful Eight, hits theaters Christmas Day. “You must have an opinion of me. You must deal with what I’m saying and deal with the consequences.”
Of course, Tarantino has faced allegations of racism since his first film, Reservoir Dogs, opened in 1992. The writer-director’s liberal use of the N-word in his scripts, from Pulp Fiction through Jackie Brown and to his last film, Django Unchained, has drawn the ire of many prominent black critics and filmmakers, among them Spike Lee, who has vowed that he will never see the film.
The director said he “couldn’t have cared less” when black critics penned “savage think pieces” about Django.
“If people don’t like my movies, they don’t like my movies, and if they don’t get it, it doesn’t matter.” Tarantino said. “The bad taste that was left in my mouth had to do with this: It’s been a long time since the subject of a writer’s skin was mentioned as often as mine. You wouldn’t think the color of a writer’s skin should have any effect on the words themselves. In a lot of the more ugly pieces my motives were really brought to bear in the most negative way. It’s like I’m some supervillain coming up with this stuff.”
Tarantino also weighed in on this year’s #OscarsSoWhite controversy, when black critics and filmmakers accused the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences of racism for failing to nominate Selma director Ava DuVernay in the Best Director category.
“She (DuVernay) did a really good on Selma, but Selma deserved an Emmy,” Tarantino said.
Tarantino also discussed his upcoming film The Hateful Eight, a pre-Civil War-set Western about eight outlaws forced to shack up in a cabin to escape a raging blizzard. The director plans to release Eight in the long-neglected, ultra-wide 70mm format in a select 100 theaters that he personally ensured were outfitted with the proper projectors. Tarantino has long been an advocate of preserving film and has repeatedly criticized theaters for switching to digital projection.
“If Buzzy, the kid who pops the popcorn, simply hits play on the menu, then we’re just there watching HBO in public,” Tarantino told Ellis. “And I don’t know about you, but I don’t need to watch HBO with a bunch of strangers.”
Check out the rest of Tarantino’s interview with Bret Easton Ellis here.