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Quentin Tarantino Confirms Whether Kill Bill Is One Movie Or Two

Kill Bill Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 were released months apart, featured their own separate opening and closing credit sequences, and covered dramatically different stylistic terrain – but Quentin Tarantino is here to tell you that they are, in fact, one movie. 

The infamously chatty writer-slash-director has been busy, busy, busy on the promotional trail for his new film Once Upon a Time in Hollywood of late, and he's been dropping all sorts of bread crumbs about the state of his 10-movie retirement plan, the status of possible upcoming projects, and all manner of other cine-tastic news along the way. During a recent appearance on CinemaBlend's ReelBlend Podcast, Tarantino finally laid to rest one of the biggest questions surrounding his cinematic oeuvre, confirming in no uncertain terms that he absolutely views the first two Kill Bill films as a single movie.

Prompted to give his own opinion on that particular debate by the show's hosts, Tarantino addressed the topic with surprising clarity, "Technically we released it as two movies, and there is a closing and an opening credits [on each movie], but since I made it as one movie and I wrote it as one movie, [it's one movie]." 

It's been well documented that Tarantino originally went into the Kill Bill production viewing the project as a single, three- to four-hour film. The idea of cutting it into two separate features didn't actually happen until late in production. In this recent interview, Tarantino offered a few thoughts on that drastic narrative change as well: "Now, it works really good that way. Frankly, the truth of the matter is, I don't think it would've been as popular as a four-hour movie." 

Of course, we know those "two separate features" count as one in Tarantino's eyes — though it's also worth mentioning that actually Tarantino did eventually release the film overseas as a four-hour epic entitled Kill Bill: The Whole Bloody Affair in 2011, which had critics noting that the extended cut led to a slightly different cinematic experience.

Regarding Tarantino's insistence that Kill Bill Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 are, in his own eyes, a single film, that's an important distinction in the grand scheme of the director's career, chiefly because it may or may not change the status on his official film count. As a reminder, Tarantino fans are keeping close track on that count with Once Upon a Time in Hollywood being billed as "The Ninth Film From Quentin Tarantino." With Tarantino already circling a yet-to-be-greenlit, R-rated Star Trek film, many are worried the filmmaker's lauded career may be coming to an end sooner rather than later.

So, with Kill Bill Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 now being viewed as one movie, does Once Upon a Time in Hollywood still count as number nine in Tarantino's filmography? Are we really not counting Tarantino's little-seen debut My Best Friend's Birthday, or the feature-length Grindhouse flick Death Proof among his features? And what could all this mean if Tarantino and Uma Thurman eventually do team up for Kill Bill Vol. 3? Would he even view that possible third Kill Bill as a new feature? Or would he simply slot it in as a continuation of the original, and count the entirety of the Kill Bill series as a singular whole? 

Our heads our spinning at all the possibilities surround all the possible "loopholes" in Tarantino's retirement plan. At this rate, that 10-movie rule may stretch well beyond its original parameters. One thing remains certain, though: Quentin Tarantino is the only human being alive who knows what Quentin Tarantino will do next. 

While we wait to find out what QT's next big move will be, we should all rejoice that the wait to see his Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is almost over. That film set to hit theaters nationwide on July 26.