Quentin Tarantino is a cinematic wunderkind. Having never received formal lessons in the art of filmmaking, he’s gone on to win two screenwriting Oscars, and has been nominated for Best Director on two separate occasions. Some say he’s a genius.
Others would say he’s a hot head. Never one to back down from a fight, or bite his tongue on a subject he’s passionate about, he’s had his fair share of beefs in Hollywood. Whether it’s a director, an actor, a website, or some paparazzo, Tarantino is ready to throw down at a moment’s notice. Here’s a look at some of QT’s most notorious feuds.
QT vs. Gawker
Gawker didn’t steal Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight script, but they did post a link to a third-party website hosting the leaked screenplay for the world to see. Understandably, Tarantino was pissed. The Hateful Eight was set to be a western-themed follow-up to Django Unchained, but with the script being downloaded at an alarming pace, QT decided to scrap the project and sue Gawker for direct copyright infringement. Then things got a little strange.
The lawsuit was dropped by courts due to it being only “speculation,” and then, on May 1st, Tarantino filed a second complaint. But, less than a week later, he withdrew his lawsuit completely, but left the door open for further legal action in the future. As for The Hateful Eight, Tarantino decided to continue the project, and it is currently in pre-production.
QT vs. Spike Lee
Tarantino and Spike Lee have been at odds for years, ever since the release of Jackie Brown. Lee thought that Tarantino’s script — which included 38 instances of the N-word — was irresponsible and racist.
I have a definite problem with Quentin Tarantino’s excessive use of the n-word. I think something is wrong with him… It’s just the n-word, the n-word, the n-word.
In an interview with Playboy in 2003, QT let it be known exactly how he felt about Lee’s disapproval.
Because he’d been talking all this sh*t instead of talking to me about it. My biggest problem with Spike was the completely self-serving aspect of his argument. He attacked me to keep his “Jesse Jackson of cinema” status. Basically, for a little bit of time before I came along, you had to get Spike Lee’s benediction and approval if you were white and dealing with black stuff in a movie. F*ck that.
Perhaps just to spite Spike, Tarantino used approximately 109 instances of the N-word in his Oscar winning script for Django Unchained. Known black man Jamie Foxx came to the defense of his Django director.
I respect Spike, he’s a fantastic director. But he gets a little shady when he’s taking shots at his colleagues without looking at the work. To me, that’s irresponsible.
Lee claims that he will not watch Django because it is insulting to his ancestors. Meanwhile, the rest of the world will not watch Spike Lee movies because it is insulting to their intelligence.
QT vs. Oliver Stone
Natural Born Killers was a script that Tarantino had penned when he was still hunched over the counter of the Manhattan Beach Video Archives rental store in California. The script floated around Hollywood for a while, until Oliver Stone came across it. Tarantino was excited that an Oscar-winning director like Stone would be handling his material — until Stone changed just about everything in the script.
I wish [Stone] had just f*cking ripped it off…biggest problem is that his obviousness cancels out his energy and his energy pumps up his obviousness. He’s Stanley Kramer with style.
QT had his named removed from the script and would only accept “story by” credits. Stone, for his part, was adamant that the script was his to do whatever he pleased.
I bought it at the bottom of the pile. It had been around town for a long time and it had been rejected everywhere. So there was no evil intention. I saw something there that was the basis of the movie.
Despite the dust-up, the two have since put their creative differences behind them, but Quentin, to this day, claims that he has never sat through the entire film.
QT vs. Denzel Washington
One is handsome black man who beats the sh*t out of everyone in his films. The other is a writer-director with a five-head that houses some of the greatest stories ever told on film. But, in 1995, on the set of Crimson Tide, the two had a verbal sparring match that would lead to seven years of beef between the Hollywood heavyweights.
It went something like this: Tarantino was hired to pen some rewrites on the script for Crimson Tide during the filming of the movie. Denzel took offense to some of the material, deeming it racist. Finding QT on set, Denzel engaged in a shouting match with him, to which Tarantino responded by asking if they could go somewhere more private to talk.
No, if we’re going to discuss it, let’s discuss it now.
In 2002, though, Washington sought out Quentin in a quest to bury the hatchet. Not only did the two make kissy-faces, Quentin would later work with Washington’s daughter Katia on Django Unchained.
I sought him out 10 years ago. I told him, Look, I apologize. You’ve just gotta let that go. You gonna walk around with that the rest of your life?
I think it’s safe to say that Quentin narrowly avoided Denzel going all Man on Fire on him.
QT vs. This Guy
Sometimes you gotta just smack a b*tch.