Roman Polanski reached out to Quentin Tarantino over the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood story. Tarantino has Polish actor Rafal Zawierucha portraying Polanski in the movie and the director has deep ties to the story, which has now become a piece of history. Tarantino had to be careful while approaching the subject and he was well aware of that factor when writing the movie since the impact of the Sharon Tate murder by the Manson Family is still being felt today.
Sharon Tate was murdered by the Manson Family in 1969 while she was pregnant with the child of Roman Polanski. The story is one of the many that will be addressed in some fashion in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. When asked about Polanski, Quentin Tarantino had a lot to say. He explains.
"What happened was... look, when it comes to Roman Polanski we're talking about a tragedy that would be unfathomable for most human beings. I mean there's Sharon, there's his unborn son that literally lived without ever being born. That's just a crazy sentence even to say. I felt that the story of her death, and the Manson tragedy had moved into legit history. So it actually is of historical importance beyond just his own personal tragedy. So I felt I was on OK grounds there."
With that being said, Roman Polanski did get in contact with Quentin Tarantino to get a feel for what Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is all about. He was curious to see how his story and Sharon Tate's was going to be portrayed in the movie. In the end, Tarantino was contacted by a mutual friend to get the details. Tarantino had this to say about the situation.
"I didn't want to call him and talk to him while I was writing it because I'm not going to ask him permission. I'm going to do it, all right? I don't think he needed any anxiety and I didn't need any anxiety as far as that was concerned. However, after it was finished, he got wind of it and he reached out through a mutual friend. That friend called me and said, so what's up with this? He said that Roman wasn't mad. He didn't call up irate or anything. He was just curious. What is this?"
While Roman Polanski wasn't mad about the situation, his wife Emmanuelle Seigner was. She criticized Tarantino and Hollywood for using Roman Polanski's image, while the entertainment industry still vilifies him. In the end, Tarantino allowed a friend of Polanski's to read the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood script. Polanski lives in Europe and was not able to read the script in person. Tarantino explains the situation.
"So what I did was... Roman's obviously stuck in Europe. I had the friend come over and read the script. He came to my house. He read the script simply so he could call Roman up and tell him the idea and what's in it. And basically that he didn't have anything to worry about."
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood hits theaters next week and Quentin Tarantino fans are starting to get pretty hyped for the movie, which may be one of the director's last. The early buzz on the movie has been extremely positive and it looks like Tarantino may have another hit on his hands. You can check out the rest of the interview with Quentin Tarantino over at Deadline.