CANNES: BASTERDS, INGLOURIOUS & OTHERWISE…

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FROM THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

QUENTIN TARANTINO and BRAD PITT have spun some revisionist history on how World War II ended.

Their war saga INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS premiered Wednesday at the CANNES FILM FESTIVAL, presenting a band of Jewish Allied soldiers led by BRAD who play a pivotal role in taking down the Third Reich with a strategic strike against the top Nazi brass.

“It was definitely outrageous, which I’m always game for,” BRAD said of QUENTIN’S rewrite of the history books.

The band’s exploits culminate in a bloodbath at the premiere of a Nazi propaganda film in Paris as BRAD’S commandos exact savage revenge for Adolf Hitler’s genocide against the Jews.

“People have come up to me a lot and they’ve asked me, is it a fairy tale? Is it a Jewish wish fulfillment fantasy?” QUENTIN commented.

“My characters changed the outcome of the war. Now that didn’t happen because my characters didn’t exist.”

Had they existed, though, the events that play out over the two hour 40 minute epic are entirely plausible, QUENTIN maintained. The movie sets the stage for his revision of the war’s end with a fairytale opening that reads: Once upon a time…in Nazi occupied France.

Along with BRAD PITT, the international cast of INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS includes DIANE KRUGER as a German movie star and Allied operative and MELANIE LAURENT as a French Jew hiding under an assumed identity.

Canadian MIKE MYERS, who played super spy AUSTIN POWERS, does an English accent again as a British intelligence officer orchestrating the BASTERDS’ climactic mission.

“My parents were born in Liverpool. My father was in the Royal Engineers and my mother was in the Royal Air Force. My mother was one of those ladies and World War II was talked about at the table constantly. So I got a call, ‘Would you like to play a British general?’ And I did a jig.”

QUENTIN came to visit BRAD last summer with the script in hand. BRAD said the two talked about movies deep into the night.

“I got up the next morning and saw five empty wine bottles laying on the floor. Five. And something that resembled a smoking apparatus. I don’t know what that was all about,” BRAD stated.

“And apparently, I agreed to do the movie, because six weeks later, I was in uniform. I was Lt. Aldo Raine.”

With his heavy Southern drawl, BRAD’S character becomes known as Nazi killing terror ALDO THE APACHE – the mention of him and his BASTERDS bringing horror to the hearts of German soldiers. When he forms the band, ALDO tells his team that each one owes him 100 Nazi scalps.

QUENTIN sticks to period costumes and settings but offers his typically divergent musical backdrop, including Spaghetti Western style music from ENNIO MORRICONE and even DAVID BOWIE’S theme from CAT PEOPLE (PUTTING OUT FIRE).

Debuting in theatres in the United States and elsewhere starting in late August, INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS is one of 20 films competing for the PALME D’OR, CANNES’ top prize, the award QUENTIN won with 1994’s PULP FICTION.

QUENTIN’S great love of cinema is evident throughout as characters discuss favourite directors and spread propaganda through film. The demise of Nazi Germany itself ultimately hinges on the magic of film.

“On one hand, it’s a metaphor for the power of cinema,” QUENTIN remarked.

“On the other hand, it’s not even a metaphor at all. It’s literal. It is, the power of cinema is going to bring down the Third Reich. And I get a big kick out of that.”

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