Kurt Russell Sees A Pirate Captain Quality In Quentin Tarantino's Directing Style

Whatever you may think of his filmography, the one thing you can't take away from Quentin Tarantino is his impeccable ability to put a cast together. Chances are that if you join one of his productions, you'll likely show up again somewhere down the line, if not in the very next film. Zoë Bell, Michael Madsen, and Samuel L. Jackson are only a few of the many recurring actors who continue to make appearances across his body of work, with one of my favorites being Kurt Russell.

The "Escape from New York" star marked his first (and best) Tarantino venture with 2007's "Death Proof," where he played the sinister Stuntman Mike. His performance is such a blast, as it plays to his strengths as a charismatic actor. Mike is a calm and collected serial killer who uses a reinforced metal weapon to murder unassuming women on the road — that is, until he gets a taste of his own medicine and subsequently (hilariously) falls to shambles. It's easily one of Tarantino's most underrated movies.

But with Russell giving his all to such a memorable screen baddie, it's no wonder Tarantino wanted to bring the actor back into the fray with such characters as bounty hunter John "The Hangman" Ruth in "The Hateful Eight" and stunt coordinator Randy Lloyd in "Once Upon a Time in Hollywood."

Ahoy, Mateys! It's Captain Quentin

Russell has been through the Tarantino school of filmmaking enough times to know how the filmmaker operates, offering a fitting comparison point. During a 2015 interview with Men's Journal, Russell compared Tarantino's presence with the demeanor of a passionate pirate captain who revels in the excitement of his environment:

"It's like a pirate ship. He's the captain, and he stands on the bow looking for a ship to attack — not a port. You're going to draw your swords and swing across, grab their women, and swordplay will carry the day. And then you'll all cruise to an island somewhere, open up the treasure, and get drunk on rum. To be able to experience Quentin in his prime, that's something I'll take with me and remember."

If you've ever seen Tarantino in interviews, he has such a hyperactive passion for talking about the movies he loves. He always sounds like he's raring to go out there and live dangerously, which gives Russell's characterization some credibility. Tarantino loves what he does, especially if he can do it practically, such as the last half hour of "Death Proof." Although his past actions have sometimes shown someone who has taken the danger of his sets a bit too far.

While filming "Kill Bill," Tarantino asked Uma Thruman to perform a car stunt, even though she didn't believe to feel safe, which resulted in a crash that left the actress with knee and leg injuries. The pair has since made up, but it goes to show that sometimes the best interest of a filmmaker is to run your set with a level head, not artistic passion. It's a lesson he's seemed to have learned since that fateful day.

"Death Proof" is currently streaming on The Roku Channel and VUDU.