March 30, 2023

Austin Butler is crediting Quentin Tarantino for having the coolest and most welcoming sets around, citing a communal love of movies.

Austin Butler is on his way to possibly winning the Best Actor Oscar. But before he played legendary singer Elvis Presley, Austin Butler played Manson Family sidekick Tex Watson in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. And now he’s crediting the director for having the coolest set around.

After having a taste of a 39,000 Scoville hot sauce on First We Feast’s Hot Ones, Austin Butler reflected on his time working with Quentin Tarantino and how it changed his perspective on what movie sets should be like. “I don’t want to speak out of school…It’s really awesome when you’re on set. The first time that I heard this, it was just so cool…We’re on set and he says [after a take], ‘OK, we got it but we’re gonna do one more. You know why?’ And the entire crew screams, ‘Because we love making movies!’” This is a motto that Tarantino has been using on the sets of most of his films both as a rallying cry and a reminder of why everybody is there in the first place.

Although the director’s sets can be tight–he famously bars the use of cell phones–Austin Butler genuinely admires the Tarantino atmosphere, especially compared to others he has been on. “There are sets that are so sterile, there are sets where there’s no joy. There are sets where people are just like at a job. And you’re trying to create something that you’re gonna give to the world and with Quentin, that was so cool because it just changes the atoms in the room. And then the next time that ‘We love making movies!’ happens, now you’re in on it. And so every new crew member or actor…they’re a part of the tribe.”

Of note, as Austin Butler made his way through Sean Evans’ gradually grueling gauntlet of hot sauces–concluding with “the last dab”–he had peanut butter and jelly sandwiches by his side. However, as Elvis Presley’s favorite sandwich was peanut butter, banana and bacon and Butler didn’t quite slip into the King of Rock and Roll’s voice, the actor seems to be following through on escaping the persona he tried so hard to encapsulate.

What did you think of Austin Butler’s performance in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in the West? Do you think he’ll end up winning for Elvis? Let us know in the comments section below.

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