Quentin Tarantino just confirmed the long-time rumour involving his 2009 war-drama “Inglourious Basterds” and Adam Sandler.
During the director’s latest appearance on Bill Maher’s podcast “Club Random”, he admitted that the role of Sergeant Donny “The Bear Jew” Donowitz was written for Sandler.
However, at the time, Judd Apatow, who also appeared on the podcast as a fellow interviewee, had already gotten Sandler to star in his ’09 comedy-drama “Funny People” a year and a half before the film began production.
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“[Judd and I] met each other through Adam Sandler during the time that I did ‘Little Nicky,’” Tarantino told host Maher, referring to his cameo in the 2000 rom-com which Sandler starred in. “I was like hanging out with that crew for a while. We went to a bunch of different things together. But also ‘Freaks and Geeks’ had just went off the air or it was on its way to go off the air and I had missed it, but that whole ‘Happy Madison’ crowd was like crazy for it.”
Apatow then chimed in, telling Tarantino how he felt “bad because when I did ‘Funny People’ with Sandler, I wasn’t aware that that was the exact time you were trying to use him for ‘Inglorious Basterds.’”
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“Obviously he should’ve done yours because of the whole thing of it,” the award-winning director replied. “I mean, you start with the f**king video cassette of you guys as kids. But yeah, the Bear Jew was going to…I wrote the Bear Jew for Adam Sandler. When I was doing ‘Little Nicky,’ he’s telling me like, ‘Oh man, I get to f**king beat up Nazis with a bat? F**king script! F**king awesome! I can’t f**king wait! I can’t f**king wait!’ He was like telling every Jewish guy, ‘I’m going to f**king play this guy who beats up Nazis with a f**king bat.’”
While Sandler went on to star in Apatow’s “Funny People”, finding a replacement for Tarantino’s “Inglourious Basterds” wasn’t easy for the filmmaker.
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“Here’s the problem. [Judd] wrapped up all the good Jews [for ‘Funny People’],” Tarantino explained. “That was the problem. Seth Rogen and all the good Jews were doing ‘Funny People.’ I’m killing Hitler with baseball bats and there’s no good Jews available! David Krumholtz, nobody! All the good Jews were all wrapped up! I’m doing the Jewish male fantasy!”
Ultimately, Tarantino cast his longtime friend Eli Roth in the part.
The full episode of Tarantino and Apatow’s interview on Maher’s “Club Random” podcast drops Dec. 18.