Academy Award-winning filmmaker Quentin Tarantino has signed a two book deal with Harper, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers. Tarantino’s first work of fiction, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, will be published in Summer 2021. The novel is based on his Oscar-winning film, which received ten Academy Award nominations. In the tradition of the classic movie novelizations that have long inspired Tarantino, the book will appear initially as a Harper Perennial mass market paperback, alongside ebook and digital audio editions. A deluxe hardcover edition will follow in Fall 2021.
Once Upon A Time In Hollywood will amplify Tarantino’s original award-winning vision, while also offering a fresh, playful and shocking departure from the film. The novel will chart the lives of Tarantino’s protagonists – TV actor Rick Dalton and his stunt double Cliff Booth – both forward and backward in time.
“In the seventies movie novelizations were the first adult books I grew up reading,” says Tarantino. “And to this day I have a tremendous amount of affection for the genre. So as a movie-novelization aficionado, I’m proud to announce Once Upon A Time In Hollywood as my contribution to this often marginalized, yet beloved sub-genre in literature. I’m also thrilled to further explore my characters and their world in a literary endeavor that can (hopefully) sit alongside its cinematic counterpart.”
Vice President and Executive Editor Noah Eaker, who acquired North American rights from the William Morris Endeavor Agency, says, “Quentin Tarantino’s literary talents have been in plain sight since his first scripts, but to see how skillfully he endows his characters with life on the page and how he constantly takes a reader by surprise, even one who knows the movie by heart, is to see a master storyteller trying on a new form and making it his own.”
Tarantino’s second work with Harper will be a book of nonfiction, Cinema Speculation. He has often cited film critic Pauline Kael as a literary hero and over the years has teased a career pivot toward film-writing. The long-awaited result is a deep dive into the movies of the 1970’s. The book will be a rich mix of essays, reviews, personal writing, and tantalizing “what if’s,” from one of cinema’s most celebrated filmmakers, and its most devoted fan.