Quentin Tarantino has broken his silence about Uma Thurman's car crash on the set of his movie "Kill Bill," calling it "one of the biggest regrets of my life".
During an interview with the New York Times, the actress shared previously unseen footage of her crashing a car into a palm tree while filming Tarantino's double bill. She said she had some concerns and asked for a stunt driver to do the scene, but claimed Tarantino pressured her to do it, insisting the car was safe and the road was straight, and she ended up hospitalized.
The director, who retrieved footage of the crash for Uma's story, has now opened up to Deadline about the incident, claiming that when he heard Uma's trepidation, he tested the road out for himself and went back to her and convinced her she could do it. However, he said at the last minute they decided to reverse the direction of the shot due to lighting conditions so Uma ended up filming the scene in the untested direction.
"I told her it would be okay. I told her the road was a straight line. I told her it would be safe," he said. "And it wasn’t. I was wrong. I didn’t force her into the car. She got into it because she trusted me. And she believed me.
"As a director, you learn things and sometimes you learn them through horrendous mistakes. That was one of my most horrendous mistakes, that I didn’t take the time to run the road, one more time, just to see what I would see.... It (the crash) was heartbreaking. Beyond one of the biggest regrets of my career, it is one of the biggest regrets of my life."
Tarantino, who has rebuilt his friendship with Thuman since the incident, also addressed claims he choked Uma and spat in her face while offscreen for shots in the movie. Desperate to do the spitting scene in as little takes as possible, he stepped in as he didn't trust actor Michael Madsen to get it where he wanted. He also claimed the choking shot was Uma's idea.
Thurman took to Instagram on Monday to assure everyone she had forgiven Tarantino, who said the actress wasn't prepared for "the uprising against me this whole weekend", adding, "She blames me for not talking to (journalist) Maureen Dowd, saying it’s your own damn fault. She never meant this to roll over onto me."
He said he was taking the fall for the piece because others involved had "lawyered up" and got their names out of the story, leaving him "representing everybody". Thurman has since accused Lawrence Bender, E. Bennett Walsh, Harvey Weinstein of being responsible for covering up the crash. Weinstein's representative has denied his involvement, insisting he did not give instructions to orchestrate a cover-up.