Tarantino Is Not Ditching ‘The Hateful Eight’

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Quentin Tarantino seems to be moving forward with his new film, The Hateful Eight, even though the script was leaked to the Internet in January, which caused a very upset Tarantino to file a lawsuit against news site Gawker and say that he planned to abandon the project after having his trust breached by one of the few people who had access to the script.

Tarantino and some veteran actors of his films gave a reading of what Tarantino called “the first draft” of The Hateful Eight script at Film Independent in Los Angeles on Saturday, according to a report from Variety. Actors present for the reading included Samuel L. Jackson, who played Major Marquis Warren; Kurt Russell, who played the bounty hunter John “The Hangman” Ruth; Amber Tamblyn, who played The Hangman’s prisoner, Daisy Domergue; and Bruce Dern, who played Confederate General Smithers. The other actors on hand were James Parks, Walton Goggins, Denis Menochet, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Dana Gourrier, Zoe Bell, and James Remar. According to Variety, all of these actors have appeared in Tarantino films before.

“We’ve been rehearsing for three days, and we’re not bad,” Tarantino told the crowd. The performance lasted three and a half hours, according to Deadline Hollywood, and it gave viewers an intimate look into the iconoclastic director’s process as he guided the actors through the reading of the film, which is a Western that takes place in Wyoming shortly after the Civil War. “I’m working on the second draft and will do a third draft, but we’re reading from the first draft,” Tarantino told the audience, per Deadline Hollywood. “The Chapter 5 here will not be the Chapter 5 later, so this is the only time to see this ever.”

Deadline gave a brief overview of the plot, saying that it involved a stagecoach full of travelers who become stranded in Minnie’s Haberdashery during a blizzard in Wyoming in the late 19th century. Deadline said that the dialogue was classic Tarantino, and the director got a five-minute standing ovation at the end of the three-and-a-half-hour reading.

In January, after the script first leaked, Tarantino gave an interview with Deadline Hollywood, saying that he would abandon the project because of the leak. “I’m very, very depressed. I finished a script, a first draft, and I didn’t mean to shoot it until next winter, a year from now. I gave it to six people, and apparently it’s gotten out today,” the director said at the time. “But I can tell you, it’s not going to be the next thing I do. It’s my baby, and if the muse calls me later to do it, we’ll do it.”

Apparently he’s gotten over the incident enough to move forward with the project, as the lawsuit he’s filed against the website that he believes perpetrated the leak may be satisfying his thirst for vengeance.  “Gawker Media has made a business of predatory journalism, violating people’s rights to make a buck. This time they went too far. Rather than merely publishing a news story reporting that Plaintiff’s screenplay may have been circulating in Hollywood without his permission, Gawker Media crossed the journalistic line by promoting itself to the public as the first source to read the entire Screenplay illegally,” the suit reads. A trial date has been set for January 27, 2015.

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