Earlier this week, The Playlist spoke with Rie Rasmussen, the model-turned-actress-turned writer/director/editor/producer. Best known to American audiences for her steamy makeout scene with Rebecca Romjin-Stamos in Brian De Palma’s “Femme Fatale,” Rasmussen has in recent years been carving out a new career behind the lens. Her short film, “Thinning the Herd,” traveled the festival circuit (and was up for a Palme d'Or at Cannes), and that was where the multitalented beauty first caught the eye of Quentin Tarantino.
Now Rasmussen’s feature debut, “The Human Zoo,” which she wrote, directed, edited, produced and also stars in, has been championed by Tarantino, who has just brought the film stateside for a run. “Rie Rasmussen makes an electrifying directorial debut,” Tarantino says of the film. “It’s as shocking and violent as it is moving and charming.” After connecting over her filmmaking career, it seems Tarantino and Rasmussen have become good chums. She visited the set of “Inglourious Basterds” and has recently been chatting it up with Tarantino about his hotly anticipated “Django Unchained.”
“I’ve been around him since day one when the script was being written and I’ve followed it through its development this last year and a half,” Rasmussen tells The Playlist. “I knew the man was a genius, but...Jamie Foxx is going to motherfucking knock this one out of the park. He’s gonna be a young Jim Brown. This movie is going to be a revolution. Honestly, when I look at it and what Quentin loves, he gave blaxploitation films a voice, he gave Pam Grier that voice. She was it and he’s just this white guy. He was giving the black revenge story a bloody voice and this is what Quentin is doing today with 'Django Unchained.' ”
Rasmussen revealed that Tarantino has been working on some rewrites of the script, which he has been bouncing off the actress/director. “Just last night, he read me something. He’s like, ‘Oh, I just wrote this new dialogue, will you check this out?’ I can’t believe that Leonardo DiCaprio is going to say these words. I can’t believe it. People are going to stand up in their seats when this Tarantino rant is going on screen. I don’t know what. I’m so excited about it I’m about to lose my cool.”
Sadly, there is no role for Rasmussen in 'Django,' but that hasn’t stopped her from hoping. “Well, I am white in case you didn’t notice,” Rasmussen says with a laugh. “I am blue-eyed and Scandinavian, so there isn’t a part that even slightly, remotely resembles my physique. But there is a part being written that I would say is very much based on me, but she’s a sister. So, I don’t think anybody would appreciate me trying to do a black face like Robert Downey Jr.”
She hopes 'Django' will resonate with audiences in the same way “Jackie Brown” did for her. “I’m thinking this is going to revolutionize. If this doesn’t change the face of movies, then Hollywood is really, truly motherfucking racist. Because they didn’t pick up on it with 'Jackie Brown,' which is one my favorite movies of all time. I think it’s the most, like, adult movie we’re going to see out of Quentin Tarantino. It didn’t do it with 'Jackie Brown' because people just weren’t smart enough. That’s my deduction of it. But this is gonna change it, I just know it.”
Rasmussen’s “The Human Zoo” is now making its U.S. debut at the New Beverly Cinema, playing through November 17th. We’ll have more from the actress next week discussing her directorial debut.