Quentin Tarantino Reveals the Italian Influences On His Django Unchained
Lately, directors have been opening up to the press about the obscure influences that are coloring their current features. In the New York Times Magazine, Looper director Rian Johnson revealed that T.S. Eliot and Shakespeare helped shape the narrative of his current science-fiction thriller. And in the same outlet, Quentin Tarantino’s peeling back the onion on his highly anticipated Django Unchained.
And as you might have already guessed, Italian spaghetti westerns cast a huge shadow of Django, even though Tarantino sets his movie in the American South. And not just any spaghetti westerns, but the films of Sergio Corbucci, specifically. “His West was the most violent, surreal and pitiless landscape of any director in the history of the genre,” Tarantino tells NY Times Magazine. “His characters roam a brutal, sadistic West.”
And in these descriptions of Corbucci’s Westerns, Tarantino tips his hand as to the bleak vision we’re likely in store for when Django opens on Dec. 25. He says:
Corbucci directed the original Django back in 1966, with Franco Nero in the title role. (Look for the legendary actor to make a cameo in Tarantino’s film. I believe he was spotted in a trailer or commercial, already.) So you likely assumed that Corbucci’s filmography influenced Tarantino’s first Western. But now you know that if you’d like to do as much prep work as the notoriously prepared director before you head into Tarantino’s Django Unchained, start renting Corbucci’s past works.
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Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. He's frequently found on Twitter at @Sean_OConnell. ReelBlend cohost. A movie junkie who's Infatuated with comic-book films. Helped get the Snyder Cut released, then wrote a book about it.