When Quentin Tarantino joined forces with filmmaker friend Robert Rodriguez for Grindhouse in 2007, the exploitation double-bill seemed like a great idea. Featuring Planet Terror, a host of faux trailers and Tarantino’s Death Proof, the concept appeared to be a movie geek’s delight. However, its failure at the US box office led to the films being split apart and released separately in different territories.
It was something of a blemish on Tarantino’s spotless record (Four Rooms aside). Now the writer-director has spoken with Empire and talked about the film’s failure.
“With Grindhouse, I think me and Robert just felt that people had a little more of a concept of the history of double features and exploitation movies…No, they didn’t. At all. They had no idea what the f–k they were watching. It meant nothing to them, alright, what we were doing. So that was a case of being a little too cool for school.”
I’m in London doing press on the film before opening weekend. And I go to Edgar Wright, ‘Hey, let’s you and me and your friends go see it on Friday night in Piccadilly.’ So Nira [Park], his producer, and Joe Cornish and the whole Edgar group, we head into the heart of Piccadilly Circus to go see Death Proof on opening day.
And we walk in the theatre and there’s about 13 people in there. On the opening 8.30 show, alright? [Laughs] That was a rather humbling experience. But we sat down and watched it and had a good time. Edgar was like: ‘That was very impressive. I think I would have turned around and walked out of there. The fact you said, ‘F–k it,’ and sat down, I admired that.’”
Movies In Focus didn’t hate Death Proof, I just feel that it came up short on what was promised.
Source: Empire via Dark Horizons