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Tarantino’s back, every bit as confident, stylish and self-assured as ever before. Just the way we like it…

“This is it,” says Tarantino “This is the sweet spot”

Six movies into his directorial career, with a seventh, Django Unchained, on the way, and “deep into his forties”, as he puts it, Tarantino is brazen in his self-belief. “Artistically,” he says, “I’m at my peak”.

“I’ve worked to this, this level of skill, this level of ambition. This movie is definitely my new Mount Everest. Every time I do a big movie, that’s the next Mount Everest.”

“Well this is this Mount Everest; it’s a little higher than the other ones. And Kill Bill was pretty high as far as mountains go. In my opinion of where I am living right now, I feel it’s the best.”

The best yet? In a run that includes Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction and Inglorious Basterds, that’s quite the statement. But Tarantino was never one for statements anything but bold. The Best Director Oscar may still elude him, but in the estimates of his peers and critics, the Knoxville- born 49-year-old ranks among the best to ever live.

The aestheticisation of violence, the razor-sharp dialogue, and nonlinear storylines may be Tarantino hallmarks, but the True Romance writer has never been one to pigeonhole himself. With the heist movie, gangsta flicks, chanbara and grindhouse covered, Tarantino has turned his attention to the spaghetti western.

“I’ve always wanted to do a western. I always knew that when I did it, it would probably have a little spaghetti sauce on it to some degree or another. “It’s funny”, he says “because Kill Bill Vol 2 kind of had a spaghetti western vibe to it, and even Inglorious Basterds, especially the opening”. “I remember my script supervisor – who has been my script supervisor on all my movies –when we were shooting on that first day of Inglorious Basterds. It was that scene, and he goes, ‘Quentin, this is your first western!’”

Starring Jamie Foxx, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Christoph Walz, Django Unchained focuses on slavery in the United States – a topic Tarantino admits he’s been keen to tackle for some time. “I’ve been wanting to deal with that issue and I’ve been wishing other people would deal with that issue for a long time – and in lieu of anybody else doing it,” he says, “I’m going to throw my hat in the ring.”

“It’s a subject that means a lot to me and probably a subject that means more to me than anything else. I’m fascinated by it, but when it came to do the script, I didn’t look at any history books. I didn’t want to have the arms’ length of history. I asked myself the questions and I came up with the answers.”

Making a movie about something as sensitive as slavery is a typically brash move by Tarantino. The use of racial epithets in Jackie Brown, in particular, his homage to Blaxploitation cinema, drew critiscism from legendary director Spike Lee, while Inglorious Basterds took the unconventional route of making an action film about the holocaust.

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