Tarantino unlocks "Django's" chains at Comic-Con

Sat Jul 14, 2012 6:06pm EDT
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By Piya Sinha-Roy

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Director Quentin Tarantino unlocked the secrets of his upcoming action flick "Django Unchained" at Comic-Con on Saturday with explosive clips of the slave revenge movie, which takes place in the pre-Civil War U.S. South.

The director entered the pop culture convention's main hall in his trademark quirky sunglasses and a fedora, and was given a raucous welcome by some 7,000 audience members, some of who waited overnight to hear him speak.

"Django Unchained," due in theaters this coming December, is the latest from the maker of "Kill Bill" and "Pulp Fiction," who was joined in a panel by actors Jamie Foxx, Christoph Waltz, Kerry Washington, Don Johnson and Walter Groggins.

Until Saturday, little was known about the film and no footage had been seen in public. Tarantino said he still had one last week of shooting. He revealed that Jonah Hill is playing a racist and confirmed Sacha Baron Cohen will not be appearing.

The story follows Django (Foxx), a black slave freed by a rebel dentist-turned-bounty hunter, Dr. King Schultz (Waltz). The pair embark on a bloody bounty hunting expedition to rescue Django's captured slave wife, Broomhilda (Washington).

Fans were treated to an eight-minute promotional film reel showing scenes of Foxx and Waltz taking down villains, including Johnson and Leonardo DiCaprio. The gritty footage featured the director's trademark violence fused with sharp humor and Western music.

"One of the fun things was to take the Western genre that we know so well and place it in the Antebellum South and put a black character in the middle of it. Do the Western clichés, but do them in the South," said Tarantino.

In a twist from his villainous part in Tarantino's "Inglorious Basterds," Waltz plays a complex good guy opposite Hollywood hero DiCaprio, who plays evil plantation owner Calvin Candie. Waltz told reporters prior to the panel that Tarantino had written the role with DiCaprio in mind.   Continued...

U.S actors Leonardo DiCaprio (L) and Quentin Tarantino, pose during the launch of their film "Django Unchained" in Cancun April 15, 2012. REUTERS/Victor Ruiz Garcia