This week on totalfilm.com, we've exclusively showcased the stars of Quentin Tarantino's new WW2 revenge flick, Inglourious Basterds.
Here's 7 key characters, with words from the actors and a typically un-shy view from the director (and producer).
Col. Hans Landa
Played By: Christoph Waltz
Nationality of actor: Austrian
Nationality of character: German
Waltz on Landa: “You do not play a villain by snarling. That’s not a villain, that’s an idiot. You go by the details, you go with what’s in the story, you try to discover the narrative, and you hook into that and you want the precise, minute details.
"You must fractalise the details into more details, you want the specifics, you need ideas that you can act on. The generalisation is satisfied by putting on the uniform, the boots and that, everyone can see he's Nazi. I don’t need to worry about that.
“The funny thing is, everybody expects a German actor to be offended or feel strange about it because its about Nazis, but I didn’t hear one voice of a colleague who mentioned, so we are cool with it.
“I’m indebted to Brad Pitt. Not for one split second did he evoke the impression of a virtual person. He was there. I’m indebted to him because he never played the star - he was never a virtual person. He allowed me to be his partner and he’s accommodating, funny and polite.
“Tarantino does what’s necessary. He doesn’t stop until he has exactly what he wants.
"If he has it after 3 takes we do it in 3 takes, if it takes 18 takes then we do 18 takes, if we get the scene in a day we get it in a day.
There was one scene that was scheduled for a day and we got it in 3 days. He doesn’t stop until he has what he needs. If you feel that you can improve on it then he says, 'You want another one? Sure! I’m happy!' I trust him, he wrote the thing, he created it. He is such an astute and sharp and precise observer."
Producer Lawrence Bender: “During casting, Quentin calls me and says, 'I’m really worried, I might have written a part that just can’t be played by an actor'. This is the Colonel Landa role. He says, 'It's because not only do we need a great actor, we need a linguistic genius. He’s got to speak French, German and English, not just fluently but he’s got to do it in my language, he’s got to be a poet in all three languages, and be a great actor. That just might not be possible.
“He said, 'Look, I haven’t spent any studio money yet, I’ve only been spending my own money. If I can’t find this guy, I can’t just hire anybody. This is the key role to the movie.
“So I said to him, 'Look, I completely understand this is the plan, we’ll stop seeing any other actors except actors for this role. We'll the next week just looking for Col. Landa. He said, yes. If we find him, we have a movie. If we don’t find him then we’ve tried our best.
"A couple of hours later that morning, Sunday morning, in walks Christoph Waltz, and he reads a scene and he does it in English, he does it in French, he does it in German, and Quentin and I look at each other like, 'Holy shit!'
“So Christoph was like, 'Thank you so much, Mr. Tarantino. It was a pleasure...' And we’re like, 'Thank you'. He walked out and we literally high-fived because Christoph Waltz came in and saved the movie - literally.
“We gave ourselves a week just to be 100% sure. We saw all the other actors, and at the end of the week Quentin called up Christoph Waltz and said, 'You’re my Col.Landa, Thank you for saving my movie.'"
Next: Fredrick Zoller