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Quentin Tarantino’s father Tony Tarantino has added his voice to the campaign against his son’s criticism of police, issuing a statement in which he said the two-time Oscar-winning writer-director was “dead wrong” to call police “murderers”.
“I love my son and have great respect for him as an artist but he is dead wrong in calling police officers, particularly in New York City where I grew up, murderers,” Tony Tarantino said.
“He is a passionate man and that comes out in his art but sometimes he lets his passion blind him to the facts and to reality.
“I believe that is what happened when he joined in those anti-cop protests,” Tarantino said. “I wish he would take a hard, dispassionate look at the facts before jumping to conclusions and making these kinds of hurtful mistakes that dishonour an honorable profession.
“We have many friends and relatives who have served honorably in the NYPD and the LAPD and clearly, they risk their lives to keep the rest of us safe. Cops are not murderers, they are heroes.”
The statement was issued via the Patrolman’s Benevolent Association, the New York City police union whose chief, Paul Lynch, first called for a police-led boycott of Tarantino’s movies after the filmmaker took to the stage at the Rise Up October rally in Washington Square, New York, on Saturday October 24 to denounce police responsible for fatal shootings as “murderers”.
According to the website killedbypolice, 986 people have been killed by police in the US in 2015 alone.
Tony Tarantino’s comments will be welcomed by a campaign that has seen police unions in Philadelphia, Los Angeles and New Jersey echo the boycott move, but to Quentin Tarantino it is likely to be little more than an irritant.
In a 2010 interview with the UK’s Telegraph, he said “I never knew my father. That’s the thing. I never knew him.”
“He wanted to be an actor,” he added. “Now he’s an actor only because he has my last name. But he was never part of my life. I didn’t know him. I’ve never met him.”
Quentin Tarantino’s next film, The Hateful Eight, will be released worldwide from early January 2016.
It is slated for limited release in the US from Christmas Day, a move designed to make it eligible for Oscar consideration. To be eligible, a movie must have played to paying customers in a cinema in Los Angeles County for at least one week in the calendar year before the awards ceremony.
It remains to be seen what impact, if any, the boycott will have on the chances of Tarantino, who has twice won the best screenplay award, for Pulp Fiction in 1995 and Django Unchained in 2013.
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