The transcript below is from the video β€œMichael Jai White on Tarantino Depicting Bruce Lee Getting Beat Up” by djvlad.

djvlad:

In this clip, Michael Jai White shared his thoughts on Quentin Tarantino recently addressing the controversial scene in “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,” where Brad Pitt’s character beats up Bruce Lee. Michael Jai White then revealed that he had heard that Tarantino was going to depict either Bruce Lee or Jim Brown in the scene, and Michael added that he would’ve also been upset if Jim Brown was beat up in the movie. Michael Jai White then explained that the scene “speaks to white supremacy,” as he feels that it shows a white character beating up an Asian man, and he added that Tarantino is using his creative licenses with the scene. He added that his scene in “Kill Bill” involved him being beat up by Bill, played by the late actor David Carradine, to make the main character look better. To hear more, including Michael Jai White’s thoughts on Tarantino’s character saying the n-word in “Pulp Fiction,” hit the above clip.

VladTV:

Well, you know, you mentioned Bruce Lee being on your arm. Quentin Tarantino did an interview recently on Joe Rogan and he talked about sort of the backlash of showing, you know, Bruce Lee getting kicked into a car, you know, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. And his response was this, he said, “Where I’m coming from, I can understand his daughter having a problem with it. It’s her f*cking father, I get it. But anyone else, go suck a d*ck.

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

Okay.

VladTV:

I guess what he was saying in the interview was that Bruce Lee didn’t really have a lot of respect for American stuntmen. I guess this is some stories that were circulating. Now, Bruce Lee himself is American so… sort of that, that whole thing. But a lot of people, you know, had some sort of problems, him showing, you know, basically Bruce Lee getting beat up in this movie. Did that bother you at all or was it just whatever?

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

Yeah, it bothered me.

VladTV:

Really?

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

Yeah.

VladTV:

Okay

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

Yeah, it did bug me a little bit.

VladTV:

Why?

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

Because I felt like, okay, I heard Quentin say it was either going to be Bruce Lee, he was going to do that, he was going to have that be Bruce Lee or Jim Brown. It would really mess with me if it was Jim Brown but you know, there’s a thing where, you know, I didn’t like it because of the… there is like, it speaks of a white supremacy thing. That kind of bugs me. I know he’s looking at it like, as “Hey, it’s fictitious.” He’s taking dramatic license even with other historical things, right? So, there’s a brush that’s being painted but you’ve got a, you know, and it’s funny me talking about it because, you know, famously, the most negative thing that’s connected to me is this whole Bruce Lee thing. But you know, but it’s like, I just feel like, you know, my feeling when I saw it is that it’s white supremacy sh*tting on other people. I felt that would be, especially when I thought this was like that being either it was going to be Bruce Lee or Jim Brown. I’m like, “Why are you taking these icons, these badass icons and doing that to bolster your lead?” Maybe I have a little bit of opinion on that because the only thing I ever did with Quentin is I’m, you know, I have that move, you know, that scene where in “Kill Bill” where Bill defeats me is to make the lead look better, right? So, I felt like, oh it’s a maneuver to make this guy, yeah, Brad Pitt…

VladTV:

Brad. Yeah, to justify how he basically killed everyone at the end because he said he’s such a badass, he could beat up Bruce Lee.

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

So, for me, personally, it’s like, it’s some more Tarzan sh*t to me. You know what I mean? And so that’s why it bothers me. So you pick somebody who’s an icon to make you, and that might be quite on purpose. That’s why you did it.

VladTV:

Yeah.

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

You know, so but hey, I’m like yeah, you know, I see what you do. It’s not like I’m hating. Well, it’s like, yeah, to me, I wished it wasn’t an icon.

VladTV:

Yeah but to be fair, Tarantino’s always danced around the racism thing, you know. I mean his first, you know, huge movie “Pulp Fiction”, you know, he’s using the n-word.

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

Yeah.

VladTV:

I remember like the whole, this just looked like dead n-word storage here and so forth then he kind of showed he had a black wife I think to kind of soften that a little bit but still, you got a white guy using the n-word with a hard r to a black guy. I mean, everyone kind of cringed when they saw that.

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

Yeah but that to me, it’s a certain line there that I feel like a lot of my influences are similar to Quentin’s and I think he’s evoking what, you know, like the authenticity of that flavor. And it felt that way. He might have about 3 n words too many, you know, in my opinion, but it’s like, I’m not that insulted.

VladTV:

I mean, “Pulp Fiction” was somewhat of a modernized black exploitation film in a way. Like, I mean, you know, they talked about how much he loved those films and how he kind of modeled. You know, I mean like, I could sort of see that but I mean, you didn’t have to do it. He also didn’t have to be himself. You know, he could have gotten another actor to do that. And you know, I think Samuel Jackson, like, defended him at one point, claiming, you know, I don’t think he’s racist and and so forth.

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

I don’t think he’s racist either. No, not for a second do I think.

VladTV:

Not for second?

Michael Jai White (American Actor, Director & Martial Artist):

No, he’s definitely not.




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