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20 Surprising ‘Pulp Fiction’ Facts You Might Not Know

By 11.18.13

11. The white Honda Civic that Butch uses to plow into Marcellus Wallace is also used by Jackie in Jackie Brown and is parked in the strip club parking lot of the My Oh My Strip Club in Kill Bill: Vol. 2. Marcellus Wallace’s head turn toward Butch is reference to the Hitchcock film Psycho.

12. John Travolta was known for his dance moves prior to Pulp Fiction with his roles in Saturday Night Fever and Grease, but his dance number with Uma Thurman at Jack Rabbit Slims was inspired by the films Bande à Part and Federico Fellini’s 8 1/2. The later features a very 1960’s dance routine by Barbara Steele and Mario Pisu.

13. The t-shirt that Tarantino’s character Jimmy is wearing bears the logo of Orbit, a Detroit alternative newspaper. Tarantino picked up the shirt while doing an interview with the paper during promotion for Reservoir Dogs.

pulp fiction jimmy

14. One of the more interesting characters, in my opinion, that we learn very little about is Butch’s cab driver, Esmeralda Villalobos played by Angela Jones. Esmeralda’s character is actually based on the character from a short film called Curdled that Jones did in 1991 about a Colombian immigrant who cleaned up after murders, hence Esmeralda’s fascination with homicide. Tarantino saw the short and incorporated her into his Pulp universe.


15. Quentin Tarantino often gives a nod to his home state of Tennessee in his films, the first with Butch arranging to meet his connection in Knoxville, Tennessee. Knoxville is again mentioned in Death Proof as the location of the 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T. The Volunteer state is referenced again as being the birthplace of Lieutenant Aldo Raine in Inglorious Bastards and twice more with references to Chattanooga and Gatlinburg, Tennessee in Django Unchained.


16. In the movie’s closing credits the manager of the coffee shop is credited as just “Coffee Shop.” Not coffee shop manager, just coffee shop. It was actually because Tim Roth’s character holds a gun to the manager’s head and asks “Are you gonna be a hero?”, the manager replies “No, I’m just a coffee shop–” before Roth cuts him off and starts screaming again.

coffee shop

17. There have been countless spoofs and mash-ups of the film over the years, but one of the most inventive came in 2011, when YouTube user “crimewriter95″ re-cut the film so that it played out in chronological order. Unfortunately, the folks at Miramax had it taken down, but while it was up viewers were able to watch the movie begin with Christopher Walken’s watch story, not the Pumpkin/Honey Bunny diner stick-up.

Christopher Walken

18. While lots of people loved Pulp Fiction, 1996 Republican presidential candidate Bod Dole was not in that group. In fact, it’s probably fair to say that he hates Tarantino movies in general. In 1995 he attacked the movie industry for peddling “nightmares of depravity” (perfect name for a metal band if there ever was one). Dole criticized True Romance and Natural Born Killers for which Tarantino wrote the screenplays and accused Pulp Fiction of promoting a romance of heroin.

Getty Getty

19. The various weapons that Butch considers for carrying out his revenge in the pawn shop are nods to other films. The hammer (Friday The 13th Part 2), the bat (Walking Tall), the chainsaw (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre), and finally, the Samurai sword (Lightning Swords of Death).

20. There’s been much speculation over what is actually inside the briefcase that Jules and Vincent are guarding. The long-standing internet rumor is that it contains the soul of Marcellus Wallace, being that the combination lock is 666 and Wallace is seen with a bandage on the back of his head, alluding that the devil extracted his soul through that spot. The script’s co-writer, Roger Avary, says that the original idea was diamonds, but that it seemed too cliche and it was decided the contents would never bee seen, leaving the viewer to draw their own conclusions. Tarantino confirmed this in 2003 when a caller to the Howard Stern show asked about the case’s contents and Tarantio said, “It’s whatever the viewer wants it to be.”

Personally, I like the third theory the best, that it radiates a golden glow because it contain’s Elvis’s golden suit worn by Val Kilmer in True Romance. I guess I’m just an Elvis man.

pulp fiction briefcase

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Sources (Thought Catalog, IMDB, Wikipedia, Wiki.Tarantino)

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TAGSBruce Willisfun obscure factsJOHN TRAVOLTAPULP FICTIONquentin tarantinoSamuel L. Jackson

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