If your enthusiasm for a new Quentin Tarantino project was sent into overdrive when news leaked out last week that the Django Unchained writer-director was at work on a fresh Western script called The Hateful Eight, you’ll need to throttle back a little. How so? Tarantino is planning to shelve the project after the embryonic draft ended up spread across Hollywood.
“I’m very, very depressed,” Tarantino tells Deadline. “I finished a script, a first draft, and I didn’t mean to shoot it until next winter, a year from now. I gave it to six people, and apparently it’s gotten out today.” While it does seem a little bit toys-out-of-the-pram to ditch the film entirely, you can completely see QT’s side, in that he wasn’t ready for the script to be generally available.
So what does he think happened? Sounds like he’ll want to get The Wolf onto the case. “I gave it to one of the producers on Django Unchained, Reggie Hudlin, and he let an agent come to his house and read it,” Tarantino says. “That’s a betrayal, but not crippling because the agent didn’t end up with the script. There is an ugly maliciousness to the rest of it. I gave it to three actors: Michael Madsen, Bruce Dern and Tim Roth. The one I know didn’t do this is Tim Roth. One of the others let their agent read it and that agent has now passed it on to everyone in Hollywood.
"I don’t know how these f*****g agents work, but I’m not making this next. I’m going to publish it, and that’s it for now. I give it out to six people and if I can’t trust them to that degree, then I have no desire to make it. I’ll publish it. I’m done. I’ll move on to the next thing. I’ve got ten more where that came from.”
While he admits he knows people are always trying to ferret out what he’s working on – and that he’s pleased there is interest – he’s still unhappy that such a small group leaked out the script, which he admittedly handed out without watermarking it first. His next step, however, is apparently to contact publishers to discuss getting the script out in book form.
Those nursing disappointment can take heart in the fact that he can always go back to the idea. “I could totally change my mind, I own the f*****g thing. But I can tell you, it’s not going to be the next thing I do. It’s my baby, and if the muse calls me later to do it, we’ll do it. I was thinking about the idea of maybe publishing it before I made it, but now that deal happens for sure, and I’m not doing it next.”