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Quentin Tarantino Dishes on the ‘Django Unchained’ Casting Process

The Weinstein Company

For the build up to the December 25 release of ‘Django Unchained,’ Quentin Tarantino has started to do interviews, and in one of his latest he listed the actors who might have been his Django were it not for Jamie Foxx. That list? Idris Elba, Chris Tucker, Terrence Howard, Michael K. Williams, Tyrese Gibson and Will Smith.

Tarantino is the featured interview in next month’s Playboy, and Entertainment Weekly got a first look at the interview. Of the casting process Tarantino said of the possible Djangos “I was going to put them through the paces, make them go off against one another and kind of put up an obstacle course. And then I met Jamie and realized I didn’t need to do that.” He also speaks of Will Smith, and suggests they had a meeting but it never went that far.

Another highlight is word that Leonardo Dicaprio‘s part was originally written for someone else. QT said “when I finished the script, I realized they were a little older than I wanted the character to be. That’s a problem I have. I’ll be thinking about somebody and not take into account that I’m thinking of them from 20 years ago.”

This isn’t the first time possible alternate casting for his movies has been made public. ‘Kill Bill’ was once supposedly going to star Warren Beatty as Bill, but Beatty eventually passed on the role, while Kurt Russell, Kevin Costner, and a number of other actors fell in and out of ‘Django.’ But while with ‘Bill’ it’s fun to think about how Beatty would have made it a different movie, it’s hard to say how good Omar Michael K. Williams or Chris Tucker would have been in a movie that hasn’t been released yet. But it’s nice that Tarantino is open about his casting process.

He’s also opening to quitting while he’s ahead. He told Playboy “I just don’t want to be an old-man filmmaker. I want to stop at a certain point… I want this artistic journey to have a climax. You stop when you stop, but in a fanciful world, 10 movies in my filmography would be nice. I’ve made seven. If I have a change of heart, if I come up with a new story, I could come back. But if I stop at 10, that would be okay as an artistic statement.”

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