AFI Movie Club: JACKIE BROWN – American Film Institute

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AFI Movie Club: JACKIE BROWN

JACKIE BROWN comes from visionary director and AFI Honorary Degree recipient Quentin Tarantino, whose star-studded cast includes AFI Life Achievement Award recipient Robert De Niro.  

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JACKIE BROWN – Reelgood

Watch Steve Buscemi announce JACKIE BROWN:

Movie Trivia About JACKIE BROWN:

DID YOU KNOW? 

Pam Grier originally screen-tested for the role of Judy, the wife of drug dealer Lance, in PULP FICTION that eventually went to Rosanna Arquette. When Quentin Tarantino sent her the script for JACKIE BROWN, she thought it was for the smaller role of Melanie. However, Tarantino had crafted the part of Jackie Brown specifically for her. 

DID YOU KNOW? 

In JACKIE BROWN, Quentin Tarantino incorporated references to Pam Grier’s other films, including mimicking the “Foxy Brown” typeface in the credits, casting Sid Haig – who starred with Grier in several of her films – and using the song “Longtime Woman” over the scene where Grier is put in prison. Grier performed the song in her 1971 film THE BIG DOLL HOUSE. 

 DID YOU KNOW? 

Robert Forster auditioned for Quentin Tarantino previously, vying for the role of Joe Cabot in RESERVOIR DOGS. Though the role went to Lawrence Tierney, Tarantino told Forster at the time that that he wanted to work with him at some point, regardless. Forster received an Academy Award® nomination for his performance in JACKIE BROWN. 

DID YOU KNOW?  

For authenticity, Quentin Tarantino insisted that real money be used in the film. There was actually $500,000 in the shopping bag with the towels during the climax of the film. 

DID YOU KNOW? 

Samuel L. Jackson came up with the distinctive look for his character Ordell Robbie. Director Quentin Tarantino thought it was a terrific aesthetic and that it made the character.   

DID YOU KNOW?  

Even though Michael Keaton did not think he was right for the part of Ray Nicolette, he ended up playing the role in JACKIE BROWN and reprised the role in OUT OF SIGHT – another Elmore Leonard adaptation – for director Steven Soderbergh. 

DID YOU KNOW?  

Even though Miramax and Quentin Tarantino owned the rights to the character Ray Nicolette, Tarantino insisted that director Steven Soderbergh and Universal be able to use the character in the film OUT OF SIGHT without any sort of financial gain. 

DID YOU KNOW?  

Writer/director Quentin Tarantino was afraid to call author Elmore Leonard to discuss how he had adapted the novel into the script. He was nervous that Leonard would not approve the changes that Tarantino made in the story – including changing the title and changing the name and race of the main character. Tarantino’s fears were unfounded, as Leonard said at the time that he thought it was the best adaptation of his work and possibly the best script he had ever read. 

DID YOU KNOW? 

After the film was released, director Quentin Tarantino saw his own film 13 times at the local movie theater. He wanted to gauge the audience’s reaction to key moments of the film. 

Learn more at the AFI Catalog

The movie doesn’t end at the credits: Family-friendly Discussion Questions

Join the conversation on Twitter and Instagram now using #AFIMovieClub. Or post your responses in the comment section below.

– Why is Beaumont possibly the most important character for the story of JACKIE BROWN? 

– Why did Max Cherry purchase the Delfonics audio cassette? 

– What is the relationship between agent Ray Nicolette and Jackie Brown?  

– JACKIE BROWN is adapted from the novel “Rum Punch” by Elmore Leonard. Can you think of any other adaptations that lived up to – or exceeded – their source material?   

-Quentin Tarantino has said that JACKIE BROWN is even better the second and third time you watch it. Do you agree? Why might that be the case? 

– What makes a Quentin Tarantino film so distinctive? 

– What makes JACKIE BROWN different from other Quentin Tarantino films? How does it maintain his thematic and aesthetic through-lines? 

– Pam Grier became famous in the 1970s starring in films like FOXY BROWN and COFFY. Do you have a favorite film of hers from that period? 

– How would you rate JACKIE BROWN? 

In this AFI Archive video, JACKIE BROWN director Quentin Tarantino talks about writing dialogue:

New to AFI Movie Club? Want to learn more?

AFI has created a global, virtual gathering of those who love the movies. Each day’s film is accompanied by fun facts, family-friendly discussion points and material from the AFI Archive to enrich your viewing experience.

Learn more in our FAQ section.

Comments (1)

General Public Users, Do not delete

We watch Jackie Brown whenever it comes on cable. It’s one of our favorite movies, with one of our favorite actresses, Pam Grier. What a career she’s had!


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