Legendary Italian music composer Ennio Morricone has denied calling Quentin Tarantino a “cretin” who is “absolutely chaotic” and “talks without thinking” in an interview with the December edition of the German version of Playboy magazine.
Morricone collaborated with Tarantino in 2015 on The Hateful Eight, and won his first Oscar for the score of the neo-Western. Morricone had previously been given an Academy Honorary Award in 2007.
Morricone described the interview with Playboy as “totally false” and said that he was taking action against the publication. “I have not given an interview to Playboy Germany and even more, I have never called Tarantino a cretin and certainly do not consider his films garbage,” Morricone said in his statement. “I have given a mandate to my lawyer in Italy to take civil and penal action.”
According to the alleged interview, Morricone described the collaboration on The Hateful Eight as a difficult one. Playboy quoted the composer as having said, “He , he does everything at the last minute. He has no idea. He calls up out of the blue and wants a complete score in just a few days. That’s not possible. It makes me so mad.”
According to the interview, Morricone also had unflattering things to say about Tarantino’s meta-cinema, terming it “trash”. Morricone allegedly commented, “He only steals from others and puts stuff back together again. There’s nothing original about that. That doesn’t make him a director. He is nothing compared with the Hollywood greats, such as John Huston, Alfred Hitchcock or Billy Wilder. They had class. Tarantino simply recooks old dishes.”
The 90-year-old composer has scored numerous films, among them, Sergio Leone’s spaghetti Westerns, Gillo Pontecorvo’s The Battle of Algiers (1966), Terrence Malick’s Days of Heaven (1978), Brian De Palma’s The Untouchables (1987) and Guiseppe Tornatore’s Cinema Paradiso (1988) and Malena (2000). Tarantino has used Morricone’s compositions in the Kill Bill films and Inglorious Basterds. Morricone also composed the song Ancora Qui for Tarantino’s Django Unchained in 2012, and claimed he would never work again with the director before relenting for The Hateful Eight. “I am forever grateful for the opportunity to compose music for his film,” Morricone said in his latest statement.