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Quentin Tarantino is pretty much on top of the world right now — his last film, "Inglorious Basterds," earned Best Picture and Best Director nominations and his next film, "Django Unchained," is already December's most buzzed-about release — but in a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, he revealed that he can see the writing on the wall and plans to quit directing sooner rather than later.
The reason? He doesn't want to make a movie worse than "Death Proof."
"Death Proof," of course, was the Tarantino contribution to the experimental 2007 effort "Grindhouse," which paired the shock flick with Robert Rodriguez's "Planet Terror." Tarantino's half featured Kurt Russell as a stunt man serial killer who murders hot women by intentionally crashing his car while they are passengers. Okay, so "Death Proof" isn't exactly a great film, but over the past five years it has picked up a bit of a cult following.
That cult, however, does not apparently include Tarantino himself. The reason? He doesn't want to taint his legacy.
"I don't intend to be a director deep into my old age," Tarantino explained. "To me, it's all about my filmography, and I want to go out with a terrific filmography. 'Death Proof' has got to be the worst movie I ever make. And for a left-handed movie, that wasn't so bad, all right? So if that's the worst I ever get, I'm good. But I do think one of those out-of-touch, old, limp, flaccid-dick movies costs you three good movies as far as your rating is concerned."
So why is Tarantino, a noted film historian, so concerned about his legacy? It's not just ego; he actually hopes his films will help inspire the next generation of filmmakers with his movies.
"It's a grade-point average. I think I risk failure every single time with the movies I do, and I haven't fallen into failure. Risking failure is not what I'm afraid of. Failing is what I'm afraid of," Tarantino said. "I fantasize about another 12-year-old girl or boy, 20 years after I'm dead, seeing one of my movies, liking it. "Who the hell did that?" Seeing another movie, and then whatever they choose from the pile -- 'cause they don't know what's good and what's bad, all right? -- I have to keep their dick hard! I have to keep them wanting to go back for more."
Tarantino: Hollywood's human Viagra. You go, dude.