Quentin Tarantino has spoken up about Kanye ‘Ye’ West’s claims that he stole the idea for Django Unchained. Speaking on the Jimmy Kimmel Live talk show, Tarantino revealed he had the idea for the movie “for a while” before meeting West, explaining that the idea he may be referring to was for a different project.
In an interview with Kimmel on Jimmy Kimmel Live, which has since been shared on Twitter, filmmaker Tarantino has refuted claims by West that the latter came up with the idea for Django Unchained. “There’s not truth to the idea that Kanye West came up with the idea of Django and then he told that to me, and I go, ‘Hey, wow, that’s a really great idea. Let me take Kanye’s idea and make Django Unchained out of it.’” Tarantino told Kimmel after the host asked if he’d heard West’s claims.
Earlier this week, West made the allegation that he pitched the concept for Django Unchained to Tarantino and Jamie Foxx, who starred in the movie as the titular character Django as well as featured on West’s album. “That didn’t happen,” Tarantino stated firmly.
The filmmaker went on to explain that he’d had the idea long before he’d even met West, stating, “I’d had the idea for Django for a while before I ever met Kanye,” the multi-talented producer said, recalling that West had very specific ideas for the shoot. “He wanted to do a giant movie version of ‘The College Dropout’ [West’s debut studio album] the way he did the album—so he wanted to get big directors to do different tracks from the album and then release it as this giant movie—not video, nothing as crass as videos, it was movies, it was going to be movies based on each of the different tracks.”
In the same interview, Tarantino admitted that it was a fact he met up with West, but that whilst extremely entertaining, West’s concept for a slave film was different to Django Unchained. “We used it as an excuse—me and Kanye—we used it as an excuse to meet each other, and so we met each other and we had a really good time,” Tarantino revealed of their meeting on set. “And he did have an idea for a video and I do think it was for the ‘Gold Digger’ video, that he would be a slave. And the whole thing was the slave narrative where he’s a slave, and he’s singing ‘Gold Digger.’”
He admitted that he found West’s idea to be “really, really funny.” When Kimmel questioned the idea of a slave movie being considered ‘funny,’ Tarantino quickly explained that he turned down the idea, which was “meant to be ironic.” “It’s like a huge musical. I mean, like no expenses spared, alright, with him in this slave rag outfit, doing everything. And then that was also part of the pushback on it.” Wrapping up his take on West’s comments, he conceded that he did wish West had made something out of his idea. “I wish he had done it. It sounded really cool. Anyway, that’s what he’s referring to.”