Updated with Quentin Tarantino’s full panel presentation transcript.
A surprise appearance by Quentin Tarantino on DC Comics’ Before Watchmen panel at Comic-Con International in San Diego gave the assembled fans some news that nobody saw coming. Introduced by DC Co-Publisher Jim Lee, the filmmaker took to the stage to announce that DC will publish a 5-issue miniseries based on the screenplay for his upcoming Western, “Django Unchained,” though Tarantino was quick to emphasize that it is not an adaptation in the traditional sense of the word. The series is set to debut in print and same day digital in November.
“We have worked out a situation where we’re going to do a ‘Django Unchained’ comic. It’s going to come out — I think the first issue is going to come out a couple months before the movie opens and basically take the entire story of the film and do it as a comic book from beginning to end. What I’m really excited about — not only do I love comic books, I always loved western comics in particular along with the superhero stuff. So I was really excited when it come up with doing a comic about the film. One of the things that I’m really excited about is that ‘Django Unchained’ is a big epic. When I write big epic scripts like ‘Kill Bill,’ there’s a lot of stuff that doesn’t make the movie because they’re too f-ing big. They’d be four hour movies if I did everything that was in the script, so there always is this aspect that the script is this big literary piece that I’m always taking it out and changing it and transforming it to make it a movie by the time it’s all finished. That’s the process, I’m always adapting my movie every day, my unwieldy script into a movie every day as I do it, but what’s really cool about doing a ‘Django Unchained’ comic book is that it’s the entire script. Even though things might have changed in the movie, I might have changed something else, I might have dropped chapters, I might have dropped big pieces — that will all be in the comic. The comic will literally be that very first draft of the script. All that material that didn’t make the movie, all of that will be part of the piece. And I’m really excited about it. So, be looking out for ‘Django Unchained’ in a comic book store and 7 Eleven near you!”
Set in the South two years before the Civil War, Django Unchained stars Academy Award winner Jamie Foxx as Django, a slave whose brutal history with his former owners lands him face-to-face with German-born bounty hunter Dr. King Schultz (Academy Award winner Christoph Waltz). Schultz is on the trail of the murderous Brittle brothers, and only Django can lead him to his bounty. The unorthodox Schultz acquires Django with a promise to free him upon the capture of the Brittles – dead or alive.
Success leads Schultz to free Django, though the two men choose not to go their separate ways. Instead, Schultz seeks out the South’s most wanted criminals with Django by his side. Honing vital hunting skills, Django remains focused on one goal: finding and rescuing Broomhilda (Kerry Washington), the wife he lost to the slave trade long ago.
Django and Schultz’s search ultimately leads them to Calvin Candie (Academy Award nominee Leonardo DiCaprio), the proprietor of “Candyland,” an infamous plantation where slaves are groomed by trainer Ace Woody to battle each other for sport. Exploring the compound under false pretenses, Django and Schultz arouse the suspicion of Stephen (Academy Award nominee Samuel L. Jackson), Candie’s trusted house slave. Their moves are marked, and a treacherous organization closes in on them. If Django and Schultz are to escape with Broomhilda, they must choose between independence and solidarity, between sacrifice and survival…
Stay tuned to CBR News for more on Tarantino’s “Django Unchained” and the rest of the news coming out of CCI