Brad Pitt Explains How Quentin Tarantino Decided to Kill off Hitler in ‘Inglourious Basterds’

Quentin Tarantino‘s Inglourious Basterds is one of his most memorable films. He made the movie coming off the box office disaster Death Proof, which was a part of the Grindhouse project. However, Inglourious Basterds brought Tarantino back into the game. Brad Pitt once explained in an interview how Tarantino came to the decision to kill off Adolf Hitler in the movie.

Quentin Tarantino loves to rewrite history in movies like ‘Inglourious Basterds’

'Inglourious Basterds' Quentin Tarantino and Brad Pitt wearing suits holding a hand up with the other arm around each other
L-R: Quentin Tarantino and Brad Pitt | Michael Buckner/Getty Images

Tarantino operates in a genre space that often blends reality and fiction. He plays with pop culture in movies such as Pulp Fiction. Meanwhile, The Hateful Eight takes place some years after the Civil War. However, the past doesn’t just influence Tarantino, but he utterly rewrites how the events unfolded. Inglourious Basterds is a prime example of how Tarantino changed the events of World War II, concluding the war in a bloodbath including Hitler’s death.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is another example of how Tarantino influences real-life events. The Manson family is a sub-plot that runs throughout the movie while Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie) lives her life. The ending appears to be predictable, but Tarantino switches things up and the cult soon finds themselves to actually be the prey.

Brad Pitt touches on how Quentin Tarantino made the decision to kill Hitler in ‘Inglourious Basterds’

Collider reported on Pitt’s conversation after earning the Maltin Modern Master Award at the 35th Santa Barbara International Film Festival. He openly discussed many highlights of his career, some of the filmmakers he worked with, and how they helped steer his career in the direction it went in. Pitt was shocked when he saw that Tarantino killed Hitler in the Inglourious Basterds script, but also found it to be funny.

“[With Quentin,] I see this kid who grew up on film and grew up on television where the good guys won and things worked out,” Pitt said. “I really think he’s coming from a beautiful place of, ‘If only the world could be this way.'”

Pitt continued: “He talked about when he wrote about killing Hitler, he wrote it down that night. He wrote it on a Post-It and he put it by his bedside, and he woke up in the morning and looked at it. And it still felt like it was a good idea, so it was a keeper.”

“That’s the way that worked for him,” Pitt said. “He’s playing on our collective wish that the world could be this way, or if only this horrible thing wouldn’t have happened. I see innocence and a purity in that.”

Brad Pitt won the Oscar for ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood’

Pitt and Tarantino prove to work rather well together. The actor took home his second Academy Award in 2020, but first for an acting category for playing Cliff Booth in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. He plays the stunt double to his best friend, Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio). Cliff struggles to find additional work and rumors spread far and wide regarding how Cliff’s wife died. He’s a whole lot more deadly than anybody around him would expect.

Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds showed another side of Pitt that audiences loved to see. He didn’t earn an Oscar nomination that year, although fans still reference many of his lines from the iconic movie. Maybe the world will see another Pitt and Tarantino collaboration in the filmmaker’s tenth, and perhaps final film.

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