Two months before the release of Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight, the head of America’s largest police union says his organization has a “surprise” planned for both the film and its director.
The Hateful Eight is facing a nationwide law enforcement boycott, after Tarantino described police officers as “murderers” at an anti-police brutality rally last month.
After Tarantino doubled and tripled down on the comments this week in interviews with the Los Angeles Times and MSNBC’s Chris Hayes, a number of police associations spoke out, solidifying pledges to boycott the much-anticipated western, which is Tarantino’s ninth film.
Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) executive director Joe Paso now tells The Hollywood Reporter his organization has something bigger planned.
“Something is in the works, but the element of surprise is the most important element,” he said. “Something could happen anytime between now and [the debut of The Hateful Eight]. And a lot of it is going to be driven by Tarantino, who is nothing if not predictable.”
Pasco clarified he was not issuing a physical threat, saying, “Police officers protect people… They don’t go out to hurt people.” However, he did say his group’s more than 300,000 members would be “opportunistic.”
“The right time and place will come up, and we’ll try to hurt him in the only way that seems to matter to him, and that’s economically,” said Pasco.
Tarantino responded to the controversy on Nov. 3 after nearly two weeks of silence, saying, “I’m not taking back what I said. What I said was the truth.”
On behalf of FOP, Pasco immediately responded and promised his group would boycott the film, while also calling out Tarantino for being inconsistent.
“All of the sudden, he’s really not a cop hater, but at the same time we’re trying to intimidate him?” Pasco asked. “So now, he’s a victim of the cops he doesn’t hate?”
“He’s got the best crisis and PR people money can buy. The only thing missing from his formula in sincerity,” said the executive director. “He’s not a credible person. This isn’t the first time he’s outraged a segment of the public, he knows at the end of the day this PR will be good for him. He’s selling a movie.”
The Hateful Eight is set for limited release on Christmas Day and will open nationwide on Jan. 8.
The Weinstein Company, Tarantino’s distributor, dropped a new trailer for the film on Thursday.
“Spend the holidays with someone you hate,” reads a tagline at the end of the preview.