Diane Kruger Defends Her Experience with Quentin Tarantino
But Diane Kruger is not one of them.
The 41-year-old German-American actress had nothing but praise for Tarantino on Tuesday, sharing a still of herself from Inglourious Basterds—the movie they worked on together—and defending him in the comments section.
“My work experience with Quentin Tarantino was pure joy,” Kurger wrote. “He treated me with utter respect and never abused his power or forced me to do anything I wasn’t comfortable with.”
Her comments come as a scene from Inglourious Basterds in which her character is choked has come under question by critics of Tarantino, many pointing to the fact that Tarantino insisted on actually choking the actress on set himself—a fact she revealed in 2009.
Tarantino recalled the making of that scene to Deadline in an interview published Monday, explaining:
“When I did Inglourious Basterds, and I went to Diane, and I said, look, I’ve got to strangle you. If it’s just a guy with his hands on your neck, not putting any kind of pressure and you’re just doing this wiggling death rattle, it looks like a normal movie strangulation. It looks movie-ish. But you’re not going to get the blood vessels bulging, or the eyes filling it with tears, and you’re not going to get the sense of panic that happens when your air is cut off. What I would like to do, with your permission, is just…commit to choking you, with my hands, in a closeup. We do it for 30 seconds or so, and then I stop. If we need to do it a second time, we will. After that, that’s it. Are you down to committing to it so we can get a really good look? It’ll be twice, and only for this amount of time, and the stunt guy was monitoring the whole thing.”
“Diane said, yeah sure,” Tarantino added. “She even said on film in an interview, it was a strange request but by that point I trusted Quentin so much that, sure. We did our two times, and then like Uma with the spitting thing, Diane said, okay, if you need to do it once more, you can. That was an issue of me asking the actress, can we do this to get a realistic effect. And she agreed with it, she knew it would look good and she trusted me to do it. I would ask a guy the same thing. In fact, I would probably be more insistent with a guy.”
His account appeared to be corroborated by Kruger on Tuesday. But even though she supported the director, she also made it clear she was standing by Thurman and the “terrifying work experience” the actress allegedly had with Tarantino and disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein.
“This is an important moment in time and my heart goes out to Uma and anyone who has ever been the victim of sexual assault and abuse,” Kruger wrote. “I stand with you.”
Thurman first talked about her terrifying crash on the set of Kill Bill in an interview with Maureen Dowd published on The New York Times‘ website on Saturday. There she alleged that Tarantino forced her to do the stunt that left her injured. He then fought for years about the crash before finally providing Thurman with the footage of it, she claimed.
Though Thurman believed the “circumstances of this event were negligent to the point of criminality,” the actress clarified on Monday that she doesn’t believe there was malicious intent from Tarantino, adding that she forgives him.
“Quentin Tarantino, was deeply regretful and remains remorseful about this sorry event, and gave me the footage years later so I could expose it and let it see the light of day, regardless of it most likely being an event for which justice will never be possible,” Thurman wrote alongside a repost of the video. “He also did so with full knowledge it could cause him personal harm, and I am proud of him for doing the right thing and for his courage.”
For his part, Tarantino called the crash the “biggest regret of my life.”
“As a director, you learn things and sometimes you learn through horrendous mistakes,” Tarantino told Deadline. “That was one of my most horrendous mistakes.”
Tarantino explained that after the crash, his relationship with Thurman was never the same again. The two had begun a working relationship working on Tarantino’s 1994 film Pulp Fiction and made two Kill Bill films together. He delivered the video to the actress, he said, to offer “closure” and also to “help her with her memory of the incident.”
As for Weinstein, a spokesperson told People that the producer had made “an awkward pass” at Thurman but denied he ever physically assaulted her, calling her claims “untrue.”
“There was no physical contact during Mr. Weinstein’s awkward pass,” the spokesperson said. “Mr. Weinstein is saddened and puzzled as to ‘why’ Ms. Thurman, someone he considers a colleague and a friend, waited 25 years to make these allegations public.”