Charlie Manson Does Indeed Have A Major Role
When details about Tarantino’s ninth film first began to circulate, most fans guessed that it would be a biopic of the infamous serial killer Charles Manson. Instead, it’s fading Western star Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his faithful stunt double Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt) who anchor the narrative – but their lives do overlap with the Manson family in at least two key ways. While Dalton lives next door to Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie) on the infamous Cielo Drive, Booth is involved in a flirtation with one of the Manson girls (Margaret Qualley) and pays a visit to Spahn’s Movie Ranch with her in the trailer. Waiting for them there? Charlie himself, played by Damon Herriman.
Lena Dunham And Dakota Fanning Are Manson Girls
In addition to Qualley’s character Pussycat, Lena Dunham will appear as Gypsy, while Dakota Fanning stars as Squeaky Fromme, the only member of the gang based on a real person. Fromme was never convicted for her involvement in the Manson murders, but she later received a life sentence after attempting to assassinate President Gerald Ford in 1975. She was finally released on parole in 2009.
Sharon Tate’s Acting Chops May Get Their Due At Last
In stark contrast to Dalton, Tate’s star was on the rise before her tragic death at the hands of the Manson family – and it seems that some of her Hollywood work will finally be honoured in the film. The trailer includes a shot of Robbie-as-Tate watching herself in the comedy The Wrecking Crew, in which she starred as a “klutz” spy. Bruce Lee (Mike Moh) trained her in martial arts for the role himself – and he’s far from the only Hollywood legend to be brought to life in Tarantino’s masterpiece. Everyone from “The King of Cool” Steve McQueen (Damien Lewis) to notorious producer Marvin Schwartz (Al Pacino) make appearances.
Expect Plenty Of Throwbacks To Earlier Tarantino Films
Both of Once Upon A Time In Hollywood’s stars have of course appeared in Tarantino films before. DiCaprio played the hideous plantation owner Calvin Candie in 2012’s Django Unchained, while Pitt took on the role of American soldier Lt. Aldo Raine in 2009’s Inglourious Basterds. Tarantino coyly nods to the latter film in the trailer, when Dicaprio-as-Dalton burns a group of Nazi soldiers alive while acting on a film set.
Playboy Will Get Some Major Brand Exposure
While the Playboy Mansion was only purchased in 1971, a group of bunny-eared playmates dance around in unison during a party in the trailer. Tate had a reasonably strong connection with Hugh Hefner’s publication; in the spring of 1967, it featured half a dozen sexual photographs of her taken by her future husband, director Roman Polanski (Rafal Zawierucha) while she was working with him on The Fearless Vampire Killers. The first line from the accompanying feature? “This is the year that Sharon Tate happens…” Notably, Playboy also published some of the best contemporary fiction in America during this period, with everyone from Vladimir Nabokov to Joyce Carol Oates contributing to its pages.
Watch the trailer in full below.