2019 has been a pretty Quentin Tarantino-heavy year with Once Upon a Time in Hollywood not only making bank but dominating a good chunk of the cultural conversation. If you weren’t tired about talking about whether Cliff Booth killed his wife or not or eating Kraft mac and cheese, then get ready for more: Come December a new documentary on Tarantino, called QT8: The First Eight, we’ll get us talking about his other seven films as well. (Eight if you consider Kill Bill’s two volumes as separate entities.)
The star-studded documentary, which features doubtless breathless praise from his many actors and collaborators, will arrive months after one of his biggest box office successes. It’s also been one of his most contentious. Debates swirled over his treatment of female characters, with Time actually enlisting writers to count the number of lines they receive versus their male counterparts (while skipping the female-heavy Death Proof entirely).
Of note: Uma Thurman is not listed as one of Tarantino’s many collaborators appearing in the doc. Last year Thurman revealed she was injured on the set of Kill Bill during a driving scene. She publicly forgave him, and has even floated the idea of a Kill Bill Vol. 3, all while pointing the blame partially at Harvey Weinstein, who had sought to cover up the incident.
As per IndieWire, QT8 — directed by Tara Wood, who made a similar mid-career filmmaker doc on Richard Linklater the same year as Boyhood — boasts many of his female collaborators defending the auteur from charges of misogyny. “He writes women like nobody’s business,” says Jennifer Jason Leigh, who played a woman routinely beaten by sexist men in The Hateful Eight. “The fact that he always has women in these strong positions isn’t something that he necessarily highlights or billboards,” says Lucy Liu, who squared off against a steel-wielding Uma Thurman in Kill Bill. “The fact that he always has women in these strong positions isn’t something that he necessarily highlights or billboards.”
Tarantino has said, as recently as this summer, that he still plans to retire after 10 films, one of which still may be a Star Trek. If that’s so, that makes QT8, made while its subject is still only 56, almost close to a career-spanning doc. Meanwhile, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is being re-issued in theaters with 10 extra minutes, hopefully a couple of them showing the James Marsden doing his best Burt Reynolds.