About Kill Bill
- RopeofSilicon: Could you tell me about Bill’s gradual move to becoming a more powerful presence as the movies go on, and was it intentional to keep him a mystery until Volume 2?
- David: Well, it wasn’t conceived that way at all, it was conceived as one movie and you’ve gotta keep Bill out of it for a while and wonder who is Bill and build up this idea that there’s this incredibly powerful, cruel, maybe monstrous guy and then meeting him and discovering that you’re like him. He is charming and all those kind of things, it was supposed to happen all in one movie. There was actually a close-up of me at the end of the first movie, and then he took that back out and he thought, “No, I’m gonna stick with this complete mystery.”
It’s hard to talk about the concept because splitting into two movies totally kind of changes the concept anyway and the result is you have two very different movies. The first movie is pure action and the second movie moves a lot faster actually, the cutting is much more choppy and much more Tarantino and GET IT ON, but the content is rambling and all over the place, which is more like what we are used to with Tarantino. I like the second movie better, of course I’m in it, and you know that helps too. [laughing]
- David Carradine, "BILL SPEAKS: David Carradine Talks KILL BILL: VOL. 2" by Brad Brevet. Comingsoon.net, (April 4, 2004).
- Of course we can't bring up the subject of villains without touching upon Carradine's latest role, that of Bill. "I don't really think of Bill as a villain," he says. "That's different. I don't think of the villains [I've played] as villains, but Bill, particularly, is not a villain. He's a warrior, right? And he's a bad guy, but there's no such thing as a good guy in a Quentin Tarantino movie. They're all bad guys. And Bill, he's in love..."
All's fair in love and war, eh? "Well it's not that 'All's fair in love and war.' It's the warrior thing," Carradine clarifies. "I mean she ['The Bride' a.k.a. Uma Thurman] betrayed him and she's got to pay for that, that's all there is to it. That's the rule. And she knew that goin' in and comin' out. And she also deserves her revenge. And he knows that and he's not afraid of it, he's not afraid of anything. Nobody in that movie is afraid of anything, if you notice. And that's one of the things about Tarantino that I really like. There are no pussies, you know? They'll all look death straight in the face and spit at it."
- David Carradine, "IGN Interviews David Carradine". IGN, (13 Apr 2004).
- Q: The audiences come to really expect a monster from Bill. And with a title like KILL BILL there's no real suspense as to what's going to happen.
- A: Well, that's just one of the endless tricks that Quentin is always playing on everybody. For the first half of the movie... I call VOLUME 1 the first half of the movie because it is one movie, and it's an epic, no doubt about it A three-and-a-half hour epic. And someday that's how you'll be seeing it, all in one piece. We just did, with a six-month intermission. But you're wondering who is this monster? Then you meet him and he's kinda like Cary Grant or something... I'm talking about what he wrote, not what I did.
- David Carradine, “KILL BILL VOLUME 2 - US interview with David Carradine”. Phase9.
- All the other deadly vipers have some empathetic quality: O-Ren Ishii has this horrible past, Vivica's character just wants to be a mom, The Bride has been abused... But my character is just bad all the way through, there's nothing to like about her. You're going to hate her so much in the second one, because she does horrible things.
- I asked him for some research films, because I didn't really know that much about a lot of genres he was coming from. I got 75 tapes and boxes and boxes; moving truck coming with more. There were so many movies it was unbelievable. And he also showed double features at his house all the time, but I saw all of it. I saw Japanese anime, I saw kung fu films, I saw Fistful of Dollars, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, all the Spaghetti Westerns as well. And then I saw ones that were specific to my character and certain influences that were drawn from them, like Twisted Nerve, an obscure English thriller [where] the whistling song comes from, [a] Swedish porn film for my patch. I think he gave me that on videotape.
- Q: So why did it make sense to cut this into two movies, or were you just a little indecisive in the editing room?
- A: No, it was a situation where... here's the deal... I could watch the four-hour KILL BILL. I'm a movie junkie. But I actually think the average moviegover would o.d. on four hours. I think it's the difference between people loving it and wow, okay, yeah, but... not the cinamatees, not the film critics, but average Joes, average Reggies. So I thought, yeah, let's cut it in half, but the trick there is to just make sure that actually VOLUME 1 works as a good evening's entertainment and VOLUME 2 works as a good evening's entertainment. They'll both be out on DVD at some point and you'll have the whole rest of your lives to see them together.
- Q: But they are completely different films... More than VOLUME 1, VOLUME 2 seems to be the marriage of your two major influences, being the martial arts film and the spaghetti westerns.
- A: There was a spaghetti western aspect running all through VOLUME 1 too, but we switch it... it was definitely a major Eastern influence with a Western minor, and VOLUME 2 is definitely the spaghetti major with the Eastern minor going on.
- Q: Are you a person that's inclined to carry a grudge, experience that sense of vengefulness?
- A: No, I think it's not really a healthy use of energy, but it sure makes good drama.
- Q: It seemed, in the first film, that that was the only thing that was driving The Bride.
- A': Yes. And it is in the first film because in the first film she's just burned out, flying through the sky; she's completely living for only one thing... almost like someone who's dead already and living for revenge. And in the second one is where you really see the origins and the death of the character.
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