The day many fans of the Big Kahuna Burger feared has finally come: during his surprise guest appearance at the Jerusalem Film Festival, Quentin Tarantino confirmed that his retirement is coming.
"I am planning to stop at 10 [films], but at 75 I might decide I have another story to do."
-Quentin Tarantino in the Jerusalem Film Festival
Tarantino currently has eight movies under his belt, meaning that he only has two more movies to go before calling it quits. While his statement about possibly coming back at a later age is somewhat assuring, that still means almost two decades without seeing Tarantino's unique style in a cinema, which for many is depressing news.
What's Next for Tarantino
Just because he won't be sitting on a director's chair in a few years' time doesn't mean that Tarantino will leave the film industry for good. Tarantino has expressed interest in branching out and finding new ways to express his love for film and storytelling in general, such as going into film criticism and even writing books. Given that he often compares his writing process to that of writing a novel, it makes sense that Tarantino would be interested in making one of his own in the future.
He also promised to keep old-school cinema alive and well after he purchased the New Beverly Cinema in Los Angeles, where 35mm projection is still the main attraction. For fans of his works, it will be a sad day when he leaves movie sets for good but at least they will be able to watch some of his most recommended movies in their appropriate aspect ratio.
Over the years, Tarantino has made a reputation for himself by promising movies that only stayed as concepts. With only two movies left, the most anyone can do is speculate what Tarantino will tackle next, which is exactly what the rest of this article will be about.
Listed below are every known potential project Tarantino may or may not use for his last two movies. Take note that as of this writing, all of these stories are rumors and even if Tarantino has showed interest in them, he has yet to confirm or deny these stories' progress.
The Vega Brothers/Double V for Vega
Anyone who watched Tarantino's movies knows the popular theory which claims that all of his movies take place in the same continuity, MCU style. This theory would have been given all kinds of credibility if Tarantino chose to follow up both Reservoir Dogs (1992) and Pulp Fiction (1994) with their prequel movie, Double V for Vega, which would have starred characters from the aforementioned movies and reveal that they are in fact, siblings.
The characters in question would be Mr. Blonde/Vic Vega (Michael Madsen) from Reservoir Dogs and Vincent Vega (John Travolta) from Pulp Fiction, who many thought to be brothers because of their similar last names. Given their (spoiler) on-screen deaths, Double V for Vega would ideally be set before the events of their respective movies and show the brothers going on a crime spree similar to the Gecko brothers in From Dusk Till Dawn (1996) but due to both actors' age and the unlikeliness of recasting, Tarantino has gone on record to abandon the project.
Kill Bill Vol. 3
Both volumes of the Kill Bill series are considered to be one gigantic four hour roaring rampage of revenge, meaning a possible third volume would serve as its direct sequel. Set almost a decade after the events of the original movie because Tarantino wanted to give both the Bride (Uma Thurman) and her daughter "a period of peace," Kill Bill Vol. 3 would once again show how futile the circle of revenge is, with the Bride on the receiving end this time around.
Kill Bill Vol. 3 would also see the return of those unfortunate enough to have run into the Bride, including Sofia Fatale (Julie Dreyfus) who was left mutilated but very much alive at the end of Vol. 1 and Copperhead's/Verenitta Greene's (Vivica A. Fox) daughter, who the Bride left with the permission to seek vengeance against her after she killed the girl's mother.
Once again giving credence to the shared universe theory, Killer Crow would have taken place around the same time as Inglourious Basterds (2009), only in a different front of World War 2. Tarantino has gone on record to describe what this World War 2 movie starring an all black unit may be like:
"My original idea for Inglourious Basterds... also followed a bunch of black troops, and they had been fucked over by the American military and kind of go apeshit. They basically — the way Lt. Aldo Raines (Brad Pitt) and the Basterds are having an “Apache resistance” — [the] black troops go on an Apache warpath and kill a bunch of white soldiers and white officers on a military base and are just making a warpath to Switzerland."
-Quentin Tarantino on Killer Crow
Killer Crow would be another Tarantino movie to shine a light on race relations, a subject matter barely touched on by most mainstream World War 2 movies, but given his track record with historical movies that dealt with the same issue, Killer Crow would be yet another entertaining way to tackle the harsh realities of history that are rarely discussed or even acknowledged.
Less than Zero Remake
Though Tarantino is not known for adaptations, this potential project may be another exception to the rule like Jackie Brown (1997), which was based on the Elmore Leonard novel Rum Punch.
Roger Avary, co-writer of Pulp Fiction, has confirmed that Tarantino has been trying to get Fox to let him remake Less than Zero, the 1987 adaptation of a Bret Easton Ellis novel about a college freshman trying to help his best friend get out of an out-of-control drug habit. Apparently, Tarantino's had interest in this potential remake/adaptation ever since Avary adapted Ellis' other novel, Rules of Attraction, into a film in 2002. With Tarantino being a fan of Ellis' works, it would be interesting to see him return to adapting someone else's work after immortalizing his legacy with original stories and scripts.
Forty Lashes Less One TV Series
It's no secret that Tarantino loves Spaghetti Westerns and his adoration for the genre hasn't subsided after the completion of The Hateful Eight (2015), with him showing interest in adapting Elmore Leonard's Western novel Forty Lashes Less One but with one catch: he envisions it as a TV show.
Tarantino is no stranger to TV but he has yet to do more than appear as a guest director, let alone create an entire series. The story's premise, where an Apache and a black veteran are forced to cooperate to break out of prison and survive, is perfect for Tarantino's style but what's even more enticing than seeing him make a Western buddy movie is seeing how he would stretch the story into a ten episode series on a channel like HBO. Obviously, he'd have to go to a very specific channel that would allow him to go wild with his signature elements like excessive cursing and gallons of (fake) blood but the mere prospect of a TV show from Tarantino is something to look out for nonetheless.
John Brown Biopic
If there's one thing Tarantino hates besides digital film, it's the biopic genre, which he has described as a lazy method of storytelling and award collecting. Yet despite his disdain for historical reenactments, there is one historical figure he'd like to dedicate a biopic to: the abolitionist John Brown, who Tarantino has labeled as his "favorite American."
For those who are unfamiliar with the name, John Brown was an anti-slavery militant from pre-Civil War America who believed that the only way to bring an end to slavery was through armed revolt. Given Tarantino's preference for revisionist historical fiction and a violent style that has more in common with '60s exploitation movies than it does with serious Oscar contenders, it would be interesting to see how he would tackle a real historical event that deals with a topic (i.e. slavery) his last two movies (Django Unchained and The Hateful Eight) spoke strongly against.
Tarantino is known for his massive knowledge of film so it should be no surprise to know that he's shown interest in experimenting with certain genres. Aside from promising would-be sequels and possible movies, Tarantino mentioned that he'd like to try making either a Science Fiction movie or a '30s era gangster movie. One genre he's surely not touching, though, is the horror movie. Even if Death Proof (2007) was technically his deconstruction of the genre, he can't see himself making a straightforward horror movie dedicated to scaring audiences.
He may have not given any other details outside of a specific style or time setting but it would still be great to see Tarantino do something outside of contemporary crime movies or another homage to an old genre he's already visited.
No matter what story he unfolds on the big screen, Tarantino's cinematic voice has always been a unique one and it will be sorely missed when he formally steps down from behind the camera. His career may be coming to an end but his legacy and influence will stay with movies and moviegoers for generations to come.