Quentin Tarantino: Director's first film My Best Friend's Birthday on YouTube

Some of the dialogue for the film eventually found its way into Tarantino's script for the Tony Scott film True Romance

Roisin O'Connor
Sunday 02 October 2016 10:21
Comments

Quentin Tarantino's first film is generally viewed to be Reservoir Dogs, but fans of the director will likely also point you towards another title: My Best Friend's Birthday.

Tarantino co-wrote, produced, directed, edited and starred in the 70-minute film about a man [Clarence, played by Tarantino] trying (and failing) to surprise his friend Mickey - recently rejected by an ex-girlfriend - on his birthday.

The black and white comedy, shot in 1987 while Tarantino was working at Video Archives in Manhattan Beach, California, was mostly lost to a reported film lab fire and never released, but you can watch what remains of the film on YouTube.

IndieWire reports that the film was shot on 16mm (apparently for around $5,000), and the fire that reduced its runtime to 36.22 occurred during post-production - the surviving version of which has been shown at film festivals since Tarantino's career progressed.

The brief footage is filled with references to the Partridge family, Elvis Presley, Rod Stewart, That Darn Cat and 'The Ballroom Blitz' by British band The Sweet playing on a jukebox.

For many fans it bears a far greater stamp from Tarantino's personality than his later work - as Open Culture puts it, a "distilled form" of his jittery, enthusiastic yet distracted public persona.

Some of the dialogue for the film eventually found its way into Tarantino's script for the Tony Scott film True Romance.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in