Quentin Tarantino broke his silence, giving an interview to Deadline on Monday in which he defended himself and his directing methods. Thurman, in addition to accusing Harvey Weinstein of sexual assault, spoke about making the Miramax-produced film Kill Bill, detailing a disturbing car crash she was in under Tarantino’s direction — that left her with lasting injuries — as well as how the director spit on her in a scene and choked her with a chain in another. While Tarantino called the crash “the biggest regret of my life, getting her to do that stunt” in the lengthy interview, he said that the spit and the choke were just part of the way he works — and evoked a scene he shot with Diane Kruger in Inglourious Basterds in his defense. Now Kruger is speaking out after being pulled into the drama.
A car crash was just one part of Uma Thurman’s difficult shoot for Kill Bill:
After saying it was “Uma’s suggestion” to “wrap the thing around her neck, and choke her” because she wanted the shot to look realistic, he went on to say, “When I did Inglourious Basterds, and I went to Diane [Kruger], and I said, ‘Look, I’ve got to strangle you. If it’s just a guy with his hands on your neck, not putting any kind of pressure and you’re just doing this wiggling death rattle, it looks like a normal movie strangulation. It looks movie-ish. … What I would like to do, with your permission, is just … commit to choking you, with my hands, in a close-up. We do it for 30 seconds or so, and then I stop. If we need to do it a second time, we will. After that, that’s it. Are you down to committing to it so we can get a really good look?’ … The stunt guy was monitoring the whole thing.”
He said the scenes with Diane went off without a hitch. “She even said on film in an interview, ‘It was a strange request, but by that point I trusted Quentin so much that, sure,’” he recounted. “We did our two times, and then like Uma with the spitting thing, Diane said, OK, if you need to do it once more, you can. That was an issue of me asking the actress, can we do this to get a realistic effect. And she agreed with it; she knew it would look good, and she trusted me to do it. I would ask a guy the same thing. In fact, I would probably be more insistent with a guy.”
The graphic strangulation scene, featuring Diane Kruger, that Quentin Tarantino was referring to in Inglourious Basterds:
Kruger was surprised to see her name come up amid this dispute between Thurman and Tarantino, who are on good terms, they both have said. On Tuesday, Kruger took to Instagram to speak out — and showed nothing but love for both the actress and the director.
“In light of the recent allegations made by Uma Thurman against Harvey Weinstein and her terrifying work experience on Kill Bill, my name has been mentioned in numerous articles in regards to the choking scene in Inglourious Basterds, Kruger wrote. This is an important moment in time and my heart goes out to Uma and anyone who has ever been the victim of sexual assault and abuse. I stand with you. ”
She continued: “For the record, however, I would like to say that my work experience with Quentin Tarantino was pure joy. He treated me with utter respect and never abused his power or forced me to do anything I wasn’t comfortable with.”
Kruger turned off comments on her post, clearly not feeling the internet’s thoughts on the topic. So far, it has 12,765 likes.
Thurman’s interview with the New York Times was published on Saturday, and in it she accused Weinstein of sexually assaulting her. What she said about Kill Bill, however, has been getting even more attention. She said that Tarantino forced her to do the driving stunt, which she didn’t feel comfortable doing, and it led to the crash. She subsequently wrote on Instagram that she doesn’t believe there was malicious intent behind Tarantino’s having her do the stunt, though she still finds the situation “negligent to the point of criminality.” She calls the “cover-up” by Weinstein and others after the fact “unforgivable.”
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