Michael Madsen Returning for SIN CITY: A DAME TO KILL FOR & Addresses Pulp Fiction Rumor
Michael Madsen played Bruce Willis' corrupt partner, Bob, in the original Sin City, and will be back for the sequel. The actor also sets the record straight about the rumor of him passing on the lead in Tarantino's Pulp Fiction.
I’m doing the sequel to Sin City. That would be Sin City 2. I’m going to Ft. Worth, Texas, and there is supposed to be some sort of a symposium or some Sin City panel where we’re going to talk about the film. I’m looking forward to that, too.
Michael Madsen is one of those rare actors that actually shies away from the spotlight. He hardly ever grants an interview, but when he does it is delightfully frank and honest. He is best known for his role as Mr. Blonde in Quentin Tarantino's freshman masterpiece, Reservoir Dogs. He absolutely steals the show with his horrifically violent scene involving a cop and an ear, which you can watch below.
While the actor doesn't have much range, he makes up for it with pure machismo, which seeps out of his pores like butter. He has that rough gruff demeanor that Charles Bronson and Lee Marvin naturally exuded. Even when he plays the villain you can't help but root for him, like in his highly underrated performance in the remake of The Getaway with Alec Baldwin.
Even after all that many people still associate Michael Madsen with a rumor that he passed on a starring role in Pulp Fiction, that would later go to John Travolta. A role that completely revitalized Travolta's career. But what's the real story behind that?
Michael Madsen: Well, the thing of that is, I’ve tried to tell … you see, it’s much more interesting to say that I turned it down. I don’t do many interviews or talk shows, so I don’t really have a chance to tell my side of that stuff. But, I’ve tried to get it out there, and I’ve tried to tell the truth so many times, but everyone wants to believe that original story.
The truth is that I was in Arizona making a movie called The Getaway. I heard that Larry Kasdan wanted me to be in Wyatt Earp, and I wanted to play Doc Holliday. I had a couple of days off from The Getaway, flew back to LA, and I met with Larry. I told him I wanted to play Doc Holliday. He said, “It’s already cast. I got Dennis Quaid for Doc Holliday.” I said, “Okay. Well, I guess that’s it.” I actually got up and was going to leave the room when he said, “Why don’t you play Virgil?” I had read the screenplay and Virgil was Wyatt’s brother. I knew I’d be able to walk down the street to the O.K. Corral. It is western history. I had already done Reservoir Dogs, so I really wanted to do a western. So, I said, “Okay, Larry, I’ll do it.” I agreed right then and there that I’d play Virgil.
By the time I got back to Arizona, they had already worked up my contract for Wyatt Earp. When Quentin came to me with Pulp Fiction, I was already contracted to do Wyatt Earp. I was actually on David Letterman promoting The Getaway and met with Quentin that night at the Regency Hotel. He was trying to talk me into doing Pulp Fiction. I said, “Well, I’m contracted to Wyatt Earp. Why can’t I do them both?” My agent then (who is no longer my agent) couldn’t put them both together.
Larry Kasdan had a two week rehearsal that he wanted to do, and I begged him to let me out of it so that I could do Pulp Fiction. But, Larry would not let me out of the rehearsal. I had to do Wyatt Earp. That is the true story. That’s how it really went down. I never turned down anything. I couldn’t have done both. It just didn’t work out that way. But, if I had played Vincent, I would have been playing my own brother. It wouldn’t have made any sense (laughs).
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