Quentin Tarantino, cool amid his ‘Inglourious’ carnage

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Everyone knows that Quentin Tarantino is one cool cat, and now the Ministry would like to show you how it’s done. On Monday evening, the director calmly sailed down a red carpet outside the New Beverly Cinema -- a temple to vintage film that he quietly bought last year -- to celebrate today’s Blu-ray and DVD release of his acclaimed Nazi carnage film, “Inglourious Basterds.” For Tarantino there was still popcorn to be chomped and a screening to watch before he could even think about Tuesday’s Golden Globe nomination announcements. “I’m not nervous,” he said. “I’ll either get something or I won’t. We’ll see.”

He ended up getting three somethings – four, if you count the widely expected best supporting actor nod for Nazi doppelganger Christoph Waltz. “I’ve always felt that any time an actor gets nominated that’s a de facto nomination for the director,” he said. Then there were Tarantino’s direct nominations: best motion picture, drama; director and screenplay, motion picture.


No wonder the inveterate movie fan stuck around for the screening after his cast ducked out for a private party at Grace Restaurant. After all, he’d even compiled a pre-screening screening of eight 35mm trailers from his personal collection, heralding old war films that influenced him in making “Basterds.”

(No points for guessing “The Dirty Dozen” and “The Inglorious Bastards,” but there’s extra credit for anyone who got “Hornets’ Nest,” Rock Hudson’s other film. Rock plays a World War II commander of a bunch of teed-off Italian kids behind German lines who help him blow up a bridge: “Meet Captain Turner’s Baby Brigade! ... Give them a ball, they’ll make up a game! Give them a grenade, they’ll blow up the world!”) Joining Tarantino on the carpet were producer Lawrence Bender and his brigade of cast members: Diane Kruger, Samm Levine, Eli Roth, Omar Doom and B.J. Novak. MIA were Waltz, who was busy filming “The Green Hornet,” and Brad Pitt, who was busy being a movie star somewhere else. For Novak, an actor-writer-producer-director of NBC’s “The Office” (which got two Globe noms, including best TV musical or comedy), being on the set of Tarantino’s violent vengeance fantasy was a long, strange trip. “This was like the movie version of making a movie, where Brad Pitt is literally the star and Tarantino is really the director. We’re in Germany and we’re going out at night, and the script is a period piece and I’m holding a gun. It was the most incredibly intense filmmaking experience you could have. “And then I came back to ‘The Office,’ which I found out I’d been a little homesick for. It was like coming back home after an amazing time at camp.” Killing Nazis, that is.

-- Irene Lacher

Top photo: Diane Kruger and Quentin Tarantino. Cast and crew photo, from left: producer Lawrence Bender, B.J. Novak, Kruger, Tarantino, Omar Doom, Samm Levine and Eli Roth. Credit: Jeff Kravitz / FilmMagic.

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