Did You Know? In the credits, the manager of the diner is simply credited as Coffee Shop.
If you listen carefully when Pumpkin (Tim Roth) has a gun to the man’s head he asks “Are you gonna be a hero?” The terrified manager replies, “No, I’m just a coffee shop-“ before he gets cut off by a ranting Roth.
Did You Know? Tarantino offered the part of boxer Butch Coolidge to Matt Dillon, who he met at a BBQ thrown by Harvey Keitel. A hot commodity after his performance in Drugstore Cowboy , Dillon wanted to mull it over. He asked for time to consider the offer.
During that period, Tarantino met with Bruce Willis. Eager to be involved, Willis had his next movie juggle their production schedule to cater for his shooting on Pulp . Tarantino cast him instead.
The Battle Of The Titans
Did you Know? The marquee outside Butch’s big fight reads: Coolidge vs. Wilson. This is a nod to competing presidential candidates Calvin Coolidge and Woodrow Wilson.
The two smaller names, Vossler vs. Martinez are an homage to Russell Vossler and Jerry Martinez - two of Tarantino’s co-workers from his days as a video store clerk.
Who Directs The Director?
Did You Know? The scenes during ‘The Bonnie Situation’ in which Tarantino appears as Jimmie, were directed by none other than an uncredited Robert Rodriguez. The pair would go on to collaborate on From Dusk Till Dawn and Grindhouse .
This links into QT’s decision regarding which onscreen role he would play. Originally it had been tie between Jimmie and Lance. He took the part of Jimmie so he could be behind the camera for the overdose scene. Eric Stoltz was then cast as Lance.
Did You Know? To prepare for the role of Vincent Vega, John Travolta turned to a close friend of Tarantino’s for advice. He asked QT’s buddy, a recovering heroin addict, for the best way to achieve a similar euphoria to taking the drug - without actually taking it.
He was pretty pleased with the lengths he had to go to for research. The friend told him to get hammered on tequila while lying in a hot bath.
Did You Know? Vincent Vega’s grumble about his 1964 Chevelle Malibu getting keyed became an unfortunate prophecy for the car’s real-life owner, Quentin Tarantino. Except what really happened to the classic automobile was much worse - it was stolen from the Pulp Fiction set back in 1994.
Luckily for QT, early in 2013 a police officer spotted a couple of hoodlums stripping a car for parts and investigated.
Yep, it was the director’s prized possession - returned after 19 years!
The Brothers Bloody
Did You Know? The pony-tailed hitman of Pulp Fiction, Vincent Vega is related to another of Tarantino’s violent creations.
His brother is none other than Vic Vega, the crazed, ear-slicing Mr. Blonde (Michael Madsen) from Reservoir Dogs .
Tarantino had originally planned to unite the pair onscreen for The Vega Brothers. Due to Vincent’s death in Pulp , the only plausible way forward would have been via a prequel. The current age of both the actors means it's probably unlikely to happen now.
Marcellus And The Briefcase
Did You Know? One of the biggest mysteries surrounding the film involves Marcellus Wallace (Ving Rhames) - and the contents of his glowing briefcase.
The theory most commonly bandied around is that it contains Marcellus’s soul. Further evidence, such as the band-aid on his neck, caused fans to believe his soul was removed at the base of his skull. Then handed to the devil. The 666 lock combination seemed to corroborate that idea.
Tarantino soon put that idea to rest. The band-aid on Marcellus’ neck was actually to cover one of Rhames’ scars. The underlying truth is: no-one knows what’s inside. Tarantino and co-writer Roger Avary ‘fessed up, saying it’s “whatever the viewer wants it to be.”
Did You Know? An array of actresses were considered for the role of Mia Wallace. Michelle Pfeiffer, Daryl Hannah, Isabella Rossellini, Meg Ryan, Joan Cusack and Julia Louis-Dreyfus were all in the running, until Tarantino set his heart on Uma Thurman.
Even though he offered her the role, she was reticent to accept. Determined to have her in the movie, Tarantino called her and read the entire script to her over the phone.
Yeah, that changed her mind.
Samuel L. Jackson
Did You Know? Tarantino wrote the role of Jules Winfield specifically for Sam Jackson. The actor still had to audition, which didn’t turn out so well.
New York actor Paul Calderon who was later cast as English Bob (“My name’s Paul, and this shit’s between y’all”) tested for the part. His take on wise gangster Jules was met with massive enthusiasm from producers. On the verge of losing the role, Sam Jackson flew in and re-auditioned. Needless to say, he nailed it. Just.
Did You Know? The Knack’s infamous My Sharona was Tarantino’s first choice for the song playing during Marcellus’ encounter with The Gimp.
After consulting his music supervisor, Karyn Rachtman, it turned out another 1994 film had secured it. The Gen-X dramedy Reality Bites snagged it for their gas station scene, which set Tarantino back on the hunt for a perfect accompaniment.
Looking back, it’s hard to imagine anything other than his final selection; The Revels’ Comanche .
Did You Know? The white Honda Civic Butch is driving when he mows down Marcellus is the same car Jackie Brown drives.
It later makes a brief cameo in Kill Bill , parked in the car park of the My Oh My strip club in Vol. 2.
Did You Know? Angela Jones, who played Butch’s cab driver Esmerelda Villalobos, played the same character in the 30-minute Tarantino-produced film called Curdled . Her profession as a crime scene cleaner in that gritty short captured Tarantino’s interest, so he wrote her into the Pulp script.
This goes some way to explaining why she asks Butch what it’s like to kill a man - workplace curiosity.
Big Kahuna Burger
Did You Know? When Jules and Vincent shakedown the college kids for Marcellus’ briefcase, Jules helps himself to a bite of Brett (Frank Whaley)’s “tasty burger.” The fast food chain it’s from is Big Kahuna Burger, a fictional Hawaiian boiger joint Tarantino references throughout his movies.
In Reservoir Dogs , Mr. Blonde snacks on one after the robbery. The Gecko brothers in From Dusk Till Dawn (which Tarantino wrote) wolf them down after shooting up a liquor store. They also receive a mention in True Romance . And Death Proof . Oh, and Four Rooms .
Did You Know? The original teaser poster for the movie was recalled by Miramax after the studio were threatened with a lawsuit. The various objects scattered in front of Uma Thurman included a pack of Lucky Strikes cigarettes and a novel, Harlot In The Heart .
The rights to feature both items had not been secured. So, Miramax sent out notices to all movie theatres demanding the one-sheets be returned. If posters were not posted back, the cinemas were fined $10.
Those posters now fetch somewhere between $500-$1000.
Bad Toilet Habit
Did You Know? Vincent’s lengthy trips to the loo aren’t just bad for his colon. Seems they also have an adverse effect on his current situation.
When he pops to the toilet at Mia’s, he returns to find her overdosing. At the diner he exits to discover the place is being held up by Pumpkin and Honey Bunny.
And his third trip is his last ever. As he walks out of the bathroom at Butch’s house, the boxer blows him away with a shotgun.
Did You Know? The weapons Butch picks up in the pawn shop are all references to some of Tarantino’s favourite exploitation flicks.
The bat is used by Sheriff Pusser in Walking Tall (the 1973 movie - not the Dwayne Johnson one), the hammer is wielded in Friday The 13th Part 2 , the Samurai Sword is from Lightning Swords Of Death , and the chainsaw? Leatherface’s chosen instrument of death in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre .
Did You Know? Swanning into Mia’s house with a trophy, we’re led to believe she and Vincent came first in the Jack Rabbit Slim’s dance contest for their impromptu twist boogie.
Truth is, they didn’t actually win. Later on, as Butch is making his way on foot to his apartment, we hear a news bulletin on a radio in the background. The announcer reveals that the trophy was in fact stolen.
Trying To Be The Shepherd
Did You Know? The Bible passage memorised by Jules is one helluva monologue to hear before facing the cold, steely chamber of Mr. 9MM.
Thing is, it isn’t strictly from the good book. Quentin Tarantino and Samuel L. Jackson co-wrote the main bulk of the speech. Those references to the shepherd and the righteous man? Created just for the script.
They did tack on a couple of lines at the end from the real Ezekiel 25:17.
Did You Know? The infamous adrenaline shot scene, when Vincent Vega plunges a hypodermic needle directly into Mia’s chest was no lucky stab.
They shot the scene with the hypodermic already in place. Travolta pulled the needle from her chest and the shot was then reversed in post-production.