The highly anticipated Marvel Cinematic Universe film Eternals is getting a lot of attention. While the latest feature film by Chloé Zhao, its director, has just won the Golden Globes, the director of the film has a grudge against Quentin Tarantino and is making himself felt. But what happened between the two men? Reply.
An old grudge
The news was all about the news: Chloe Zhao, currently working on Eternals, one of the MCU’s most anticipated films, just won the Golden Globes and took home the statuette for Best Picture and Best Director for Nomadland taken excellent Frances McDormand, actress who is known to fans of the Coen brothers.
While the filmmaker is enjoying her victory, her cameraman (or cameraman) Joshua James Richards has decided to pay Quentin Tarantino. In an interview with The New Yorker, Nomadland and Eternals’ op chief speaks to the director of Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction: “Fuck you, man!”
Joshua James Richards’ anger dates back to 2014 and would prompt Quentin Tarantino to testify at the Cannes Film Festival as the Croisette celebrated the twentieth anniversary of the Palme d’Or awarded to Pulp Fiction. The American filmmaker had launched a diatribe against the use of digital technology:
For me, digital projection is the death of cinema. The fact that most films are not shown in 35mm means the world is lost. Digital projection is only from television to the cinema!
At the time, Quentin Tarantino was working on The Hateful Eight, his second western shown in 70mm, just after the triumph of Django Unchained. The director was interested in the history of cinema and developed his ideas for the use of film and digital technology. Words Joshua James Richards obviously didn’t like. In the New Yorker, the chef justifies his use of digital technology:
Chloe couldn’t get any help or financial support because she is Chinese. With digital, we have the ability to produce our own films for $ 100,000 and bring them to a level that is worth showing in theaters.
A comparison between the budgets of Chloé Zhao’s first films and those of Quentin Tarantino’s films wouldn’t be of much interest (especially since Tarantino surrounds himself with very bankable stars like Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, or Samuel L. Jackson), let us however, we recognize that the use of digital for producers and distributors is far less expensive than film. Making a digital copy for a feature film is ten times cheaper than making a 35mm copy. In addition, digital technology enables impressive time (and therefore money) savings in post-production.
It should be noted, however, that Quentin Tarantino isn’t the only filmmaker to defend the use of film for any reason. In a recent interview with our colleagues from Konbini, which we Hitek commented on several times, the actor and director Mathieu Kassovitz (La Haine) had also defended the use of films and proved to be particularly strict compared to digital copies. Popular Christopher Nolan (Interstellar, Tenet) is also a strong proponent of the film.
A complicated debate
Should we see a war between the old Schnocks and the new generation in this “film vs. digital” debate? Hopefully not. If only because very great directors who have been in office for several decades also often use digital technology. In particular, let’s quote Terrence Malick (The Red Line, A Hidden Life), specifically on Voyage of Time, or David Fincher (Se7en), whose most recent feature film Mank (released exclusively on Netflix) a tour de force takes on his ability to texture from vintage black and white films while made entirely in digital form.
What if, in defense of the film Tarantino, Kassovitz, Nolan actually defended a certain vision not of cinema but of the film industry? What if, for these great directors, the disruption of digital technology and its quasi-hegemony had become the symbol of the reluctance of the Hollywood majors to prefer their use of film to limit mail costs as much as possible? possible? -Product and sales? And if Tarantino, Kassovitz and Nolan’s fierce defense for the film was the rejection of a world in which the gigantic Martin Scorsese (taxi driver, Goodfellas, Casino), both film defender and digital user, cannot find more successful funding for his own Movies other than streaming platforms?
Anyway, as an observer of the world of cinema, it is absolutely fascinating to watch the debate between the defenders of the film and the defenders of the digital!