Independent spirit Quentin Tarantino (1963-), born on this day in Knoxville, Tennessee, is a brilliant film maker with a loyal fan base (which includes me).
A comic book and television fanatic who taught himself to read by age three, Tarantino was a middle school drop out with Mensa IQ and flamboyant confidence.
In 1985, working at Los Angeles' Video Archives rental store, his childhood passion for movies flourished when he was paid to watch and recommend videos.
Then in 1988, it was boom, boom, boom, like an automatic gun...
Tarantino wrote the script for Natural Born Killers, then sold the script for True Romance. Two quirky, creative, and unforgettable films.
Film goers took notice.
He pulled together the backing to write and direct Reservoir Dogs, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 1992 and garnished him a cache of hosannas. A film about a group of diamond thieves, Tarantino crafted unfogettable characters, plot, and dialogue. The ending was shocking and Tarantino became overnight sensation.
Picking up momentum, he finished his independent film Pulp Fiction, took it to the Cannes in 1994, and snatched the Palme D'Or, the film festival's top prize.
Pulp Fiction exploded onto screens with astonishing characters, a hip script, warped wit, and biting violence. At the time, Tarantino single-handedly revitalized John Travolta's career, making the actor dance like a Disney Aristocat and giving him memorable dialogue about how to order a cheeseburger in Paris.
That "little" $8 million film won Tarantino a Best Screenplay Oscar and garnished millions in worldwide box-office sales. The film revolutionized the industry and our pop culture.
He continues to write, direct, and create cinema magic and said in 2012, "Iíve always been pushing that envelope. I want to risk hitting my head on the ceiling of my talent."
"I donít ever want to fail, but I want to risk failure every time out of the gate."
"I'll take a Royale with Cheese."