Police organizations around the country—first in New York, then Los Angeles, and now New Jersey, Philadelphia, and even Chicago, whose penchant for advanced interrogation makes Reservoir Dogs look like kids’ stuff—are currently calling for boycotts of Quentin Tarantino’s upcoming film, The Hateful Eight. The National Association of Police Organizations also recently asked officers nationwide to refuse to assist in any future projects helmed by Tarantino.
Police displeasure with the Oscar-winning director has nothing to do with the content of his films, however, but rather the man’s character, specifically his participation in an anti-police brutality march in New York last month. At the rally, Tarantino was approached for a quote by the Associated Press, to which he responded:
I’m a human being with a conscience. And if you believe there’s murder going on then you need to rise up and stand up against it. I’m here to say I’m on the side of the murdered.
That quote led Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association president Patrick Lynch to label Tarantino a “cop hater,” followed by a statement released through the PBA by Tarantino’s father Tony Tarantino, who said Quentin’s characterization of the NYPD as “murderers” was “dead wrong,” adding, “He is a passionate man and that comes out in his art but sometimes he lets his passion blind him to the facts and to reality.” (One could argue that the elder Tarantino’s decision to abandon his son—the director said in 2010 that he had “never met” his father, who was “never part of [his] life”—and then piggyback on his fame in an attempt to start his own acting career was also pretty “dead wrong,” but maybe that’s just us.)
Jamie Foxx, however, who Quentin Tarantino has met, stands in support of his Django Unchained director. At what sounds like a pretty wild ceremony for the Hollywood Film Awards Sunday night, Foxx addressed an absent Tarantino, saying, “You are boss — you are absolutely amazing. Keep telling the truth and don’t worry about none of the haters” when he took the stage to introduce the Hateful Eight cast. The younger Tarantino, for his part, has yet to address the growing controversy, which the AP says has been “a regular topic on Fox News and at Hollywood soirees alike” in recent days.
So, like all debates apparently must these days, this one is quickly devolving into a classic example of Fox News pundits vs. the Hollywood elite. We’ll see how much impact it has outside of those insular circles when The Hateful Eight begins its roadshow run on December 25.