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If you have a particular aversion to Stealers Wheel's 70's classic "Stuck In The Middle With You," chances are it's because of Michael Madsen's deliciously psychotic performance as Mr. Blonde in Quentin Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs. In fact, throughout the 1990's, Madsen made a name for himself as a prolific hard case in the Hollywood scene, and his resume will attest to this fact, whether he likes it or not. Though funny enough, it looks like he really doesn't like it, or at the very least he doesn't like how it's handled on the popular movie database, IMDB. That's because he believes the site makes him look bad by listing him as being a part of multiple random projects that he in actuality has nothing to do with.
In the latest installment of The AV Club's Random Roles series, Madsen was interviewed about a random sample of performances from his career, as the column's format dictates. Buried in the anecdotes about how WarGames was a happy accident in his professional life, and how he's enjoying his current stint on Comedy Central's Big Time in Hollywood, FL, is a story about a film Michael Madsen would rather you forget he was in... UKM: Ultimate Killing Machine. As a testament to how much he must truly love the finished product, Madsen takes the time allotted to talk about a film that most of us probably haven't heard about, gives an impromptu lecture on the dangers of "the IMDB." The strange thing is, as much as we may disagree with his belief in personally altering one's filmography to omit some questionable projects, we do have to agree with one piece of his rant – the information on IMDB isn't always as accurate as one would hope. Said Madsen,
It’s, like, you know, you meet somebody on an elevator and they say they have a screenplay that their brother-in-law wrote, and you say, ‘Wow, that sounds interesting,’ and the next thing you know, it’s on IMDB that you’re in it or that you’re in post-production. Or you go and you do two days for some young kids to help them out, and they put your name above the title, and they put it on the IMDB, and suddenly it looks like you’ve done 75 films in the last 10 minutes.
He goes on to mention that he has actually contacted IMDb about trying to get titles taken down, but that they have told him no on the grounds that what they do is a "public service."
No matter what you feel about how rigged the rating system is, or just how democratic the message boards really are, the one thing everyone should potentially be able to rally around as IMDB fans or foes is the fact that the site likes to jump the gun and alter people's filmography every time a rumor gains enough traction. It's particularly annoying when a project or participant is listed as being "announced," which basically equates to a widely published rumor being spread far enough to consider it at least partially true. This has led to Madsen’s page in particular being a bit of a mess, with the actor listed to be in 16 films this year alone.
However, just because we agree with Michael Madsen's feelings on the accuracy of IMDB's information, doesn't mean we give him a free pass on trying to remove films that are confirmed to be in his canon. It’s true that we'd hate it if we starred in Species 2 as well, but any good actor should own their mistakes as proudly as their successes. Especially considering Mr. Blonde and Budd from Kill Bill are two of those successes that outweigh at least five UKM: Ultimate Killing Machine movies in our eyes.
Michael Madsen can next be seen in... well, we're not quite sure which project is his next according to IMDB, but there's a lot of them to choose from!