If you’ve seen Quentin Tarantino’s latest film, The Hateful Eight, you’re no doubt aware of the fact that it could very easily be adapted into a stage play format. While Tarantino is certainly known for his verbiage and signature dialogue, none of his previous films beyond Reservoir Dogs really immediately lend themselves to being performed on the stage. The locations, flashbacks, music, and overall filmmaking technique would be lost from a stage iteration of, say, Inglorious Basterds that would no doubt result in a drop in quality. The Hateful Eight, however, is essentially already a stage play, albeit one that is presented in 70mm.
Which makes the fact that Tarantino is seriously considering turning the film into a play not too much of a shock. The filmmaker has spoken before about potentially adapting The Hateful Eight for the stage, but speaking with The Wrap at last night’s Golden Globes, where the film picked up the Best Score trophy, Tarantino confirmed that he does, indeed, plan to pen a stage adaptation of the Western whodunit:
“I’ve thought it out completely. I’m just waiting for this [awards] season to be over so I can write it,” Tarantino said. “I gotta put myself there and write it for this.”
Tarantino added that he would direct the stage adaptation himself as well, noting that producer Harvey Weinstein initially tried to talk the filmmaker into making The Hateful Eight a stage play in the first place:
“Harvey actually — he tried to talk me into doing it as a play first,” Tarantino explained. “He said, ‘Let’s just say this out loud before we commit to doing the movie.’ And I was like, ‘Look, I could. But I like the mystery aspect and the mystery aspect will really only work in the movie. And I have the 70mm and I have the snow. So let me do that.’”
Indeed, I’m glad the film iteration of The Hateful Eight exists, but I am incredibly curious to see how the story would play out on the stage—especially with different actors involved. The filmmaker has previously said that all the film’s actors are eager to reprise their roles on the stage, but he’s interested in seeing different actors reinterpret the characters. There’s no doubt that Samuel L. Jackson and Jennifer Jason Leigh and Walton Goggins—hell, the entire ensemble—are incredible in the film, but I’m also of the mind that I’d love to see other performers get the chance to put their stamp on these devious characters.
It’s unclear when this stage play would mount, but here’s hoping it doesn’t mean we’re gonna have to wait extra long for Tarantino’s next film. Or, as we’ve learned by now, it’s also possible that Tarantino decides he doesn’t want to turn The Hateful Eight into a stage play after all and busies himself with something entirely new. At this point, he’s earned the right to do whatever he wants.