Back Seat Producers Season 07 Shows

BSP Episode 241: True Romance

Release date:  9/10/1993

Warner Bros.

Directed by

  • Tony Scott

Produced by

  • Gary Barber
  • Samuel Hadida
  • James G. Robinson

Written by

  • Quentin Tarantino
  • Roger Avary (uncredited)


Clarence Worley

  • Christian Slater

Alabama Whitman

  • Patricia Arquette


The hosts review:

David enjoyed the movie and, because some of the scenes were so long and drawn out and Taratino-esque, he started to read the trivia and realizes that it was, in fact, written by Tarantino.  Tony added that it wasn’t completely like Tarantino because some of the dialogue wasn’t as clever and snappy throughout.  He does, though, keep to his love of monologues.  Tony felt that the Elvis parts could have been cut out and it wouldn’t have taken anything away from the movie, and David agreed that it didn’t seem to make much sense.  David originally thought the movie was going to be dreadful, judging solely by Christian Slater’s beginning monologue, but once Patricia Arquette showed up, it was a great improvement.

They break now to talk about the long list of actors/characters.  David thought that Slater improved greatly after the first monologue, although he’s not a big fan of Slater’s Jack Nicholson tones.  Both hosts really liked the scene where Slater confronts Gary Oldman.  The Dennis Hopper/Christopher Walken scene was fantastic, but what a letdown when neither of them were in the movie again!  The one that was surprising, as Tony thought his scene would be a “one & done” was Brad Pitt.

Both Tony and David thought Arquette was fantastic, and they were pleasantly surprised by her performance.  They liked her playfulness and they thought she and Slater had good chemistry.  They both also really appreciated her fight scene with Gandolfini.  It was a very atypical fight scene and it worked really well.  Lena (from the chat room) said that she loved Gandolfini’s expression when he first punched Arquette; it was a mix of evil and joy.  Even the way that Arquette’s prostitute falls in love with and marries Slater’s character meshed and seemed realistic… as much as it could be.

Gary Oldman, Dennis Hopper, Christopher Walken, Bronson Pinchot, Saul Rubinek… all really good performances.  They also talk about how they both feel that Brad Pitt is underrated as an actor.

Touching on the Recently Dead Guy Podcast theme, Tony said he could easily see why True Romance was one of Tony Scott’s most critically acclaimed films.  The hosts then go into a list of Scott’s films.

They returned to the cast again to talk about Oldman’s pimp character and Samuel L. Jackson’s dietary preferences.

Wrapping up, the hosts agreed that there were a few scenes that could have been cut a little shorter.  They liked that it was a very unpredictable movie where the slate is effectively wiped clean by the film’s end.  If you’re into Tarantino, you’ll like this film.  David brings up the alternately ending in which Clarence dies at the end and Alabama goes on a crime spree with Mr. White from Reservoir Dogs.


Trivial bits ‘n pieces (many of which the hosts brought up during the recording):

The screenplay of True Romance was originally part of a very long screenplay written by Quentin Tarantino and Roger Avary.  The other half of it was used for the film Natural Born Killers.  In both films Tom Sizemore plays a cop.

The structure of the script was different in Tarantino’s original script. The first two parts of the movie were told in trademark Tarantino nonlinear fashion. Director Tony Scott hired Avery to change the script to linear structure for filming.

According to Dennis Hopper, the only words that were improvised in the scene with Christopher Walken were “eggplant” and “cantaloupe”.

Following the “eggplant scene”, Hopper was concerned about being “shot” by Walken with the prop gun so close against his head for fear of being burned by the barrel. Director Scott assured him the gun was 100% safe, and even tested it by having the prop man fire it against his (Scott’s) own forehead. But upon firing the prop gun the barrel extended about a third of an inch and Scott ended up on the floor with blood pouring from the wound.

The work “f*#k” and its derivatives are said 225 times.

Tony Scott gave Patricia Arquette the Cadillac featured heavily in the film as a gift after filming wrapped.

In the diner scene, when Clarence asks Alabama what her turn-offs are, she replies “Persians” in the finished film. Being turned off by her character appearing racist in that scene, Arquette name-dropped a different ethnicity for each take that was shot. She said she wanted to be equally offensive to all people.


Your Producers for this episode were:

  • Tony
  • David

This episode was recorded: 9/12/2012

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