Back in 2012, writer/director Quentin Tarantino once again brought his incredible skills back to the big screen with Django Unchained. Telling the story of a freed slave who goes on a mission to rescue his wife from an evil plantation owner, the movie was once again a huge success for the filmmaker, and he not only received very positive reviews, but also an Academy Award for his screenplay. Naturally, we’re only more excited for his next cinematic adventure, which will be coming soon in the form of the violent new post-Civil War drama The Hateful Eight.

Seemingly mixing together elements of Reservoir Dogs and Django Unchained, and equipping the story with a brilliant ensemble cast, the film looks like it could be something really special. But what exactly is the story in the movie, and who are the characters we will be meeting? Well, for your benefit we’ve put together this handy guide, which puts everything we know about the flick in one easy-to-read feature. Read on to find out what we know about The Hateful Eight so far!

Hateful Eight
Quentin Tarantino
Fittingly, The Hateful Eight will be the eighth feature film of writer/director Quentin Tarantino’s incredible career (counting the two Kill Bill halves as one), but it’s a project that almost didn’t happen. While the filmmaker was doing behind-the-scenes work on the film back in early 2014, a draft of the screenplay managed to leak online. Claiming that he was personally betrayed, Tarantino said that he was going to shelves his plans for the film, and would instead consider possibly just publishing it.

During a long drawn out lawsuit with Gawker that was ultimately dismissed, Tarantino hosted a special one-night-only stage reading of The Hateful Eight in Los Angeles. At the time, it seemed like it would possibly be the only time a Quentin Tarantino-directed performance would be held, but that changed after the reading when it was reported that the writer/director was still working on the script.

In the summer of 2014, it was revealed that the production was back on, and that Quentin Tarantino was starting to put pieces of his cast together. Filming began back in January, and The Hateful Eight is now in post-production. Sadly, The Weinstein Company, which is handling distribution on the project, has not yet announced a release date for the film.

Hateful Eight
The Story
Based on an original screenplay by Quentin Tarantino – just like all of the director’s other films – this new project is set in the years just after the Civil War, and begins with a bounty hunter (Kurt Russell) and his bounty (Jennifer Jason Leigh) making their way through Wyoming during winter on their way to a town called Red Rock. Along the road, they wind up meeting two strangers, but this is only the beginning of the story. Eventually, a blizzard forces the group off the road entirely and into an establishment called Minnie’s Haberdashery. This location is actually already filled with four other individuals taking shelter from the storm – some with darker tales than others. As the night goes on, tensions flare, and in true Tarantino fashion, blood will be spilt.

Hateful Eight
John Ruth: "The Hangman"
As noted during the plot synopsis, Kurt Russell character is one of the first we meet in the narrative, and his name is John Ruth. As you probably could have guessed, he earns the nickname "The Hangman" because he’s a bounty hunter who’s pretty damn good at bringing people to justice. The Hateful Eight will actually be the second time that Russell has had the opportunity to work with Quentin Tarantino, as they previously collaborated on the Death Proof half of the double-feature Grindhouse. Russell was originally going to have a role in the writer/director’s Django Unchained, but wound up leaving the production. His part wound up being absorbed by Walton Goggins. Russell is a missed presence in any movie he’s not in, so it’s great to see him working with Tarantino once again.

Hateful Eight
Daisy Domergue: "The Prisoner"
Throughout his career, Quentin Tarantino has made a habit of making surprising casting choices and getting them to pay off in major ways. When it comes to The Hateful Eight, one can pinpoint Jennifer Jason Leigh as the production’s most interesting castmember. There was a time when a rumor was swirling around that the part of Daisy Domergue was going to go to Jennifer Lawrence, but that was debunked when Leigh got the part in October of last year. She begins the film as John Ruth’s captured prisoner, heading to Red Rock to face punishment for the crime of murder. Whether or not she will actually get there is a very reasonable question.

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