Quentin Tarantino says “Star Wars” distributors are out to destroy him

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Director Quentin Tarantino is at war with the distributors of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” blasting their “extortionist” and “totalitarian” tactics during a podcast interview. “Not the ‘Star Wars’ people but the Disney distribution people,” he clarified.

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His movie, “The Hateful Eight,” is due out on Christmas. Like every other movie that isn’t “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” his film faces a formidable competitor for the holiday box office dollar. Fair enough.

What’s torqued him off, though, are the distributor’s aggressive marketing practices. He says his film was shoved out of a key Los Angeles theater, the Cinerama Dome, after Disney threaten to yank “Star Wars.”

“They’re the hugest movie in the world. Already we’re dealing with Mt. Everest,” he said. “We’re talking about one theater in the world and they’re coming out to destroy us. They’re the Death Star.”

He stressed that “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” director J.J. Abrams isn’t the (ahem) force behind the alleged effort.

“I’m very friendly with J.J.,” he said. “We’ve been fans of each other for a long time and friendly colleagues. I think it’s for sure that ‘Star Wars’ is going to be the biggest movie in the history of the world. And good on ‘em.”

And he understands the distributors’ motivations if not their actions.

“I understand, business is business,” he said. “They actually are engaging in extortionist practices. They need to use extortion in order to destroy a movie that can’t even remotely compete with them?”

No response yet from Disney.

Here’s the interview, from Entertainment Weekly: