While hanging out at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, auteur Quentin Tarantino revealed more about his upcoming 10th (and possibly final) feature film, “The Movie Critic.” All audiences have known so far is that it would follow a titular film reviewer in the 1970s, which many speculated would be about famous female critic Pauline Kael.
But he confirmed in an interview with Deadline that the story will focus on a male film critic living in California, based on a real person who wrote reviews in a porno magazine in 1977. “He wrote about mainstream movies and he was the second-string critic,” Tarantino said. “I think he was a very good critic. He was as cynical as hell. His reviews were a cross between early Howard Stern and what Travis Bickle might be if he were a film critic.”
Discussing more about the real-life figure (who he declined to name), the director said he has done additional research. “He wrote like he was 55 but he was only in his early to mid-30s. He died in his late thirties. It wasn’t clear for a while but now I’ve done some more research and I think it was it was complications due to alcoholism,” he said.
Tarantino will have the critic writing for a fictional magazine called The Popstar Pages.
The way Tarantino describes the real figure, it’s possible this character will be like most of Tarantino’s, no doubt leading to discussion online as to whether he’s offensive or not. “But the porno rag critic was very, very funny. He was very rude, you know. He cursed. He used racial slurs. But his s–t was really funny. He was as rude as hell,” he said.
No one has been cast and if you’re hoping Brad Pitt or Leonardo DiCaprio will be tackling the leading role, prepare for disappointment. Tarantino said, like the real-life person, he’ll be aiming to cast an actor in his 30s.
“I haven’t decided yet but it’s going to be somebody in the 35-year-old ball park. It’ll definitely be a new leading man for me,” he said. The director is said to have someone he’s interested in, but hasn’t offered them the part.
He also admitted he won’t be considering a British actor for the part. “The truth of the matter is, yes, obviously, a Brit could pull it off, but I don’t want to cast a Brit,” he said. “Obviously, nothing against the Brits, but we’re living in a really weird time now. I think when people look back on this era of cinema and it’s just all these British actors pretending to be Americans and all these Australian actors pretending to be Americans, it’s like phantoms. Nobody is acting in their own voice.”
Right now there is no firm start date on production of “The Movie Critic” nor a release date, although Tarantino said he’ll enter “pre pre-production” next month in Los Angeles. He has been saying for years that after his tenth feature he will retire from directing, so we can stand to wait a minute for this one.