INDIE FILM HISTORY : “PULP FICTION”

“Pulp Fiction” is a 1994 American neo-noir black comedy crime film written and directed by Quentin Tarantino, who conceived it with Roger Avary. Starring John Travolta, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis, Tim Roth, Ving Rhames, and Uma Thurman, it tells several stories of criminal Los Angeles.

“Pulp Fiction” is a 1994 American neo-noir black comedy crime film written and directed by Quentin Tarantino, who conceived it with Roger Avary. Starring John Travolta, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis, Tim Roth, Ving Rhames, and Uma Thurman, it tells several stories of criminal Los Angeles. The title refers to the pulp magazines and hardboiled crime novels popular in the mid-20th century, known for their graphic violence and punchy dialogue.

The screenplay of “Pulp Fiction” was written in 1992 and 1993. Tarantino wrote the script on spec in 1992, sending it to various studios. He originally intended the film to be a trilogy, with three intertwining segments featuring different characters and settings, but eventually decided to focus on two segments featuring the same characters.

Tarantino and Avary spent the next two years developing the script and raising money for the film. The script was given to Miramax, who were initially unsure of whether they wanted to make it. After the success of Tarantino’s 1992 debut film “Reservoir Dogs”, Miramax greenlit the film with a budget of $8 million.

Principal photography for “Pulp Fiction” took place in and around Los Angeles between May and September 1993. The film was shot on location in various neighborhoods and landmarks around the city, including the Hollywood Hills, Echo Park, and the Aquarius Theatre in Hollywood.

One famous anecdote from the making of “Pulp Fiction” involves the “Royale with Cheese” scene, in which Vincent (played by John Travolta) and Jules (played by Samuel L. Jackson) discuss the differences between a Quarter Pounder with Cheese and a Royale with Cheese. This scene was inspired by a conversation that Tarantino and Avary had at a McDonald’s in Amsterdam about the metric system.

Another famous anecdote from the making of “Pulp Fiction” involves the “rap music” scene, in which Vincent and Mia (played by Uma Thurman) dance to Chuck Berry’s “You Never Can Tell” at Jack Rabbit Slim’s. This scene was filmed in one take, with Travolta and Thurman performing the entire dance in one shot.

“Pulp Fiction” was a critical and commercial success upon its release, grossing $213.9 million at the worldwide box office on a budget of $8 million. It won the Palme d’Or at the 1994 Cannes Film Festival and was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay for Tarantino. The film has since become a cultural phenomenon and has been widely regarded as one of the greatest films ever made.

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