UPDATE: Due to “unforeseen scheduling issues,” the performance has been moved from April 24th to April 19th and will now take place at the Theatre at the Ace Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. Original story follows.
I’m a big fan of Film Independent and the programs they put on at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). A few years ago, the organization teamed with director Jason Reitman and launched his Live Read series, in which he casts actors to read through some of Hollywood’s most spectacular screenplays live on stage in front of a sold out crowd. These events are not recorded or live-streamed, and part of the fun of being lucky enough to attend is knowing that you’re seeing something that no one else will get a chance to see. It’s sort of like a concert, but the band is forming, performing, and then breaking up all right before your eyes, never to reunite again. It’s a truly singular experience.
I’ve had the pleasure of making it out to Live Reads of The Princess Bride, Reservoir Dogs, The Big Lebowski, the pilot of “Breaking Bad,” and Anchorman, but this upcoming one may be the coolest of all. Film Independent has announced that on Thursday, April 24th, 2014, Quentin Tarantino will cast and direct the debut of his original screenplay The Hateful Eight, a western that was to be his next film before the script leaked and he decided to scrap the project altogether. Tickets are $200, and the cast for the Live Read has not yet been announced.
The director was so disappointed with the leak of his screenplay that he decided to abandon the film project (and he sued Gawker for publishing a leaked version online), but there was some talk that he would convert his script into a book instead. Considering this announcement, that no longer seems to be the case, and some are speculating that he may even actually be interested in directing this screenplay again after all. Will Bruce Dern and Christoph Waltz be on stage with Tarantino for the Live Read? They were two of the names tossed out in the early days as contenders for roles, since Tarantino reportedly wrote characters with them specifically in mind. Could this mean that he’s warming up to the idea of directing it after all, and maybe using this as an early testing ground for how it goes over? Probably not – doesn’t seem like the guy has ever needed anyone to give him acceptance before he jumps into a project – but it’ll be a great way to raise money for the organization.
Film Independent has released a synopsis of the story, as well:
The Hateful Eight follows the steadily ratcheting tension that develops after a blizzard diverts a stagecoach from its route, and traps a pitiless and mistrustful group which includes a competing pair of bounty hunters, a renegade Confederate soldier, and a female prisoner in a saloon in the middle of nowhere.
Sounds like an amazing event, and with Tarantino himself reciting the stage directions and doing the casting, this is an event that L.A.-based fans of his won’t want to miss. Now, if only I could track down $200…
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