15 things you (probably) didn't know about Pulp Fiction

  • 15 things you (probably) didn't know about Pulp Fiction

Quentin Tarantino's masterpiece, Pulp Fiction was released in cinemas 21 years ago, yep that long.

While it has become a cultural phenomenon, spouting famous catchphrases, artwork and more, we bet there are still some things you don't know about it.

Things like...

1. Tarantino had to convince Uma Thurman to play Mia Wallace

Uma Thurman originally turned down the role of Mia Wallace; Quentin Tarantino was so desperate to have her as Mia, he ended up reading her the script over the phone, finally convincing her to take on the role.

Despite that, Isabella Rossellini, Meg Ryan, Daryl Hannah, Joan Cusack and Michelle Pfeiffer were all interviewed for the role of Mia - out of all of them, Tarantino said he preferred Pfeiffer.

The parts of 'Honey Bunny' and 'Pumpkin' were written specifically for Amanda Plummer and Tim Roth.

2. Samuel L. Jackson was going to have a giant afro

Jules was originally written to have a gigantic afro, and a crewmember obtained a variety of afro wigs and one jheri curl wig.

Quentin Tarantino had never thought about a jheri curl wig, but Samuel L. Jackson tried it on, Tarantino liked it and it so Jules had a jheri curl instead.

3. Christopher Walken did his monologue to the child playing Butch

When Christopher Walken delivers his speech as Captain Koons about stashing the watch up his backside, he actually delivered it to Chandler Lindauer - who played the young Butch.

Because of his young age, Lindlauer had no clue what Walken was saying including all of the swearing and candid explanations.

4. The adrenalin shot was actually filmed backwards

To get the impact of Vincent plunging the adrenalin shot into her chest after her overdose, the shot was filmed backwards,

With the hypodermic needle already in her chest, John Travolta pulled the needle from her chest and the shot was reversed.

The spot that Vincent draws on her chest disappears on Mia's chest once she is revived.

5. Mia Wallace refers to the Kill Bill's Deadly Viper Assassination Squad

At the diner, Mia mentions to Vincent that she was in a pilot for a TV show called Fox Force Five about a five-woman team of secret agents.

In it, she describes the five female secret agents, and their descriptions match Bill's Deadly Viper Assassination Squad:

“There was a blonde one, Sommerset O'Neal from that show 'Baton Rouge', she was the leader. A Japanese one, a black one, a French one and a brunette one, me.

"We all had special skills. Sommerset had a photographic memory, the Japanese fox was a kung fu master, the black girl was a demolition expert, the French fox' specialty was sex.

"The character I played, Raven McCoy, her background was she was raised by circus performers. So she grew up doing a knife act. According to the show, she was the deadliest woman in the world with a knife."

6. Samuel L. Jackson almost lost the part of Jules

Tarantino wrote the part of Jules specifically for Samuel L. Jackson, but when Bad Lieutenant star Paul Calderon gave a great audition, Tarantino reconsidered casting Jackson.

Jackson, who thought he'd already got the part, and his audition was merely a reading, flew to Los Angeles when he heard about Calderon and auditioned again to make sure he landed the role.

Calderon was given the small role as Paul, a bartender at Marcellus Wallace's club.

7. The plaster on the back of Marcellus Wallace's head wasn't supposed to be there

When Ving Rhames was shaving his head for the role, he accidently cut the back of his neck.

This prompted Tarantino to open the whole sequence of him and Butch with a close-up on the Band-Aid.

Tarantino liked the idea of focusing on the Band-Aid rather than Marcellus' face rather than a series of single shots of Rhames and Bruce Willis because it "accentuated the character's mercurial nature".

The Band-Aid has heavily contributed to the fan theory that the briefcase contains Marcellus Wallace's soul, as the story goes when someone sells their soul to the devil; their soul is removed from the back of their head - the exact spot where Wallace has the plaster.

8. Marvin came up with the idea that he would be shot in the face to make Jules and Vincent likeable

In an interview with Phil LaMarr, who played the ill-fated Marvin, it was his idea to have his character get shot in the face by Vincent.

In Tarantino's screenplay, Marvin was accidentally shot in the throat and didn't die immediately.

Vincent and Jules, knowing that Marvin would die slowly and painfully, decide to put Marvin out of his misery with a shot to the head.

LaMarr suggested to Tarantino that it would turn audiences against Jules and Vincent, and that it would be funnier to kill him with an accidental single-bullet kill, to which Tarantino agreed.

9. Jules and Vincent were almost two English guys

Tim Roth, who had the role of 'Pumpkin' written for him, but studio boss Mike Medavoy wanted Christian Slater or Johnny Depp for the role.

Roth used his native London accent for the role, but early on in production, Tarantino considered casting Roth as Vincent and Gary Oldman as Jules and would have rewritten the characters as "two English guys", fortunately sense prevailed.

10. Vincent and Mia's dance was taken from a '60s Italian film

Tarantino, one of the biggest film buffs on the planet, is renowned for taking aspects of various different films and paying homage to them in his own pictures.

This includes the famous diner scene where Mia and Vincent win the dance contest. Tarantino's characters copy the movements from a dance performed in Federico Fellini's 1963 drama.

Uma Thurman didn't like the song playing during the content (Chuck Berry's 'You Never Can Tell') and told Tarantino so, but the director replied: "trust me, it's perfect."

Here is the original dance performed in :

11. Samuel L. Jackson predicts his Kill Bill fate

Another link to Kill Bill, when Jules is speaking to Vincent in the diner, he says he wants to retire and become a drifter.

In the marriage rehearsal/massacre at Two Pines scene in Kill Bill: Vol. 2, Samuel L. Jackson plays a piano playing drifter who is killed by Elle Driver

12. John Travolta wasn't the first choice for Vincent

Quentin Tarantino wrote the part of Vincent exclusively with regular collaborator Michael Madsen in mind for the role.

Despite knowing Tarantino's plans and expressing his interest, Madsen signed up to star in the 1994 flop Wyatt Earp which meant he couldn't be in Pulp Fiction - a decision he grew to regret.

The Sopranos' James Gandolfini was considered, while Daniel Day-Lewis was keen on the role. Quentin Tarantino turned him down in favour of John Travolta.

Tarantino wanted to make a 'Vega Brothers' movie, with Reservoir Dogs' Mr Blonde (played by Madsen) named Vic Vega, but the project never materialised).

13. Christopher Walken's character is connected to Django Unchained

Tarantino is well-known for tying characters from his various films together into a 'Tarantinoverse' (including the Vega Brothers mentioned above).

So it will come as no surprise that Christopher Walken's character Captain Koons is related to a character from Django Unchained.

In a blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment from Django Unchained, a wanted poster is shown, with the names of the Smitty Bacall gang, one of which is 'Crazy Craig Koons'.

Knowing Tarantino, it is definitely a link to Captain Koons, who obviously chose to fight for the US in the war, rather than his outlaw ancestor.

14. John Travolta got into character with the help of a lot of tequila

In Pulp Fiction, Travolta's character Vincent is a heroin addict (which is what Mia Wallace overdoses on) and Travolta had to figure out how to subtly illustrate his character's addiction.

Tarantino put him onto a recovering heroin addict who he know, and he explained to Travolta: "If you want to get the 'bottom envelope' feeling of that, get plastered on Tequila, and lie down in a hot pool. Then you will have barely touched the feeling of what it might be like to be on heroin."

Travolta then took this advice to heart, as he explained his 'research' and getting into character to his wife, who was happy to help him with getting into character.

So they both got into their hotel's hot tub and lined up shots of tequila to try and re-enact the feeling.

15. Courtney Love claims her and Kurt Cobain were offered roles

According to Courtney Love, Quentin Tarrantino asked Kurt Cobain and herself to play Lance and Jody in the film.

Played by Eric Stoltz and Rosanna Arquette, Lance and Jody are the couple who help Vincent revive the overdosing Mia Wallace, and were .

Tarantino completely denies offering the Nirvana frontman the role, and that he hadn't even met him.

Who is telling the truth? Probably not Courtney Love.

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