“Pulp Fiction” was Tarantino's last film to be produced on schedule

As the 2024 TCM Classic Film Festival kicked off with a 30th anniversary screening of Pulp Fiction on Thursday night, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson, John Travolta and Harvey Keitel reunited at the TCL Chinese Theater to celebrate Quentin Tarantino's iconic film. But while much of the discussion was devoted to praising Tarantino's influence on the film industry, Thurman found time to laugh at the auteur's long production processes.

As the four actors recall their first encounters with Tarantino when he was a young cinephile looking to prove himself in Hollywood, Thurman joked that Pulp Fiction was the last time Tarantino made an effort to keep shooting dates on schedule and stick to the script.

“I think it was probably the last movie Quentin made that was on schedule, where he actually tried to earn his days and earn his weeks,” Thurman said, to laughter from the audience. “I think after that, it was very improvisational for him.”

Jackson shared and explained that Tarantino allows his actors to spend an unprecedented amount of time rehearsing, which he said improved his performances and made the actual filming smoother.

“We practiced a lot, too,” Jackson said. “That's one of the unique qualities that Quentin affords us as actors. John and I went to the soundstage at Sony, and they marked the floor, and we killed in the room, and we did the drive, and we did whatever we had to do. We rehearsed and rehearsed and rehearsed, and when we got Up there we knew what we had to do.

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The discussion of Tarantino's increasingly lengthy creative process came the day after the director canceled his planned final film, “The Movie Critic,” which was expected to be shot in Los Angeles this fall after nearly a year of pre-production.

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