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Kill Bill: Volume 2 - I've thought about the idea of, 15 years from now, doing a sequel to these two movies

Feature by: Jack Foley

THERE is never a dull moment around Quentin Tarantino. The Kill Bill director is excitable at the best of times, but even he describes himself as ‘probably being possessed’ on the set of his latest two movies.

Kill Bill: Volumes One and Two mark his triumphant return to form, after six years of self-imposed exile in Hollywood’s wilderness. Aside from a brief appearance in the television series, Alias, he has been very quiet.

Yet now the accolades are pouring in, with the Kill Bill movies - featuring Uma Thurman as a vengeful bride, seeking to kill the five assassins who struck on her wedding day - being hailed by many as a masterpiece.

And following the UK premiere of Volume Two, Tarantino, speaking to London journalists via a satellite link from LA, said that it was very gratifying to be back on top, having dedicated so much time to the project.

"Admittedly, if we'd poo-pooed at the box office, you would feel anti-climactic. We wouldn't be done, of course, as it would still be up to history to judge it, but we would definitely be feeling anti-climactic.

"Now, having done really well at the box office, on our second time at bat, and after working for four years, it's pretty gratifying."

Needless to say, the acclaim which has greeted the Kill Bill franchise has made the director hotter than hot, and its success could pave the way for future movies in the series.

"I'm thinking about the idea of doing some graphic novels, that could follow the story, or some of the other Deadly Vipers, if I wanted to.

"I thought about the idea of writing an anime feature, which would be the origin of Bill, right? It would be a complete anime feature about how Bill became Bill. It would deal with the three godfathers of his.

"And then I've thought about the idea of, 15 years from now, doing a sequel to these two movies, that would follow Vivica Fox's daughter, as she tries to get revenge on The Bride."

First up, however, is the possibility of completing his World War Two/Dirty Dozen homage, Inglorious Bastards, as well as the slight possibility of taking on the Bond franchise.

Tarantino has expressed an interest in remaking Casino Royale, and has even spoken to Pierce Brosnan about the possibility, but he remains dubious about whether the producers will allow him to do it.

"It's one of the best stories and the first one, so it's ironic that it's never been done," he added.

Returning to the subject of Kill Bill, however, Tarantino was forced to fend off some difficult questions about the level of violence depicted on screen, opting to dismiss such accusations out of hand.

When asked whether he thought he had played a role in glamorising violence, he replied, simply, ‘no’, and then claimed that nothing in any of his movies had made his stomach turn.

So did anything, onscreen, gross him out?

"Well, actually, I was watching an episode of Jackass, where Johnny Knoxville put a bunch of live leaches in his mouth, and I started gagging.

"And I remember when I saw Monty Python's Meaning of Life, that fat bastard guy that does all the puking, that was really gross. I remember sitting in the movie thinking that if somebody vomits, and I actually smell vomit while I'm watching this, I'm going to hurl."

Dismissed, too, were recent comments by X-Men star, Patrick Stewart, who highlighted Kill Bill as a film which glamorised violence towards women, rather than empowering them. Asked whether he agreed, he looked uninterested and said: "Naturally, I don't think it's a correct comment in relation to Kill Bill."

But he got more excited when asked to name a British actor, or actress, he could provide a similar career renaissance to as the one he had given Daryl Hannah and David Carradine.

"Well, I guess after Lord of the Rings, Christopher Lee doesn't really need my help anymore, but I'm a huge Christopher Lee fan. And I've always liked Tommy Steele.

"When I think of Tommy Steele, I think of that movie, The Happiest Millionaire, the Disney movie. And I would also like to cast Dick van Dyke!"

In the more immediate future for Tarantino, however, lies the Cannes Film Festival, in May, at which he will preside as this year’s president. And, as incorrigible as ever, he concluded:

"That's like a dream come true, as I've always considered Cannes to be the pinnacle of world film-making, so to be going there ten years after winning the Palme d'Or, to be president of the jury, is terrific.

"One of the things he gets to do is pretty much figure out what the aesthetic of this jury is going to be - whether political, or national - but with mine, there will no politics, and no nothing; it's all about movies and may the best one win!"

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