No, Jamie Foxx is not starring in a weird remake of "Blazing Saddles." He's just moseying down the streets of an 1800's town in full gunslinger regalia for director Quentin Tarantino's controversial new spaghetti western … or is that a southern?
Entertainment Weekly has snagged the first two pics from Tarantino's latest blood-drenched opus "Django Unchained," which feature Foxx as the title slave freed by an erudite German named Dr. King Schultz ("Inglourious Basterds" Oscar-winner Christoph Waltz) who teaches his new Kimosabe the bounty hunter trade.
Also on display is a malevolently goateed Leonardo DiCaprio as hammer-wielding Calvin Candie, the twisted owner of a plantation called Candie Land where slaves are forced to fight for sport, and who also happens to own Django's wife, Broomhilda (Kerry Washington). After Django and Schultz score mad bounty money together, they decide to enter Candie Land incognito to rescue Broomhilda and that, as they say, is where the plot thickens.
"Christoph's character is a little aloof to what slavery actually is. He's not familiar with everything, and when he sees atrocities, it's Greek to him," Foxx told EW. "But Django lets him know this is the way the world is and we got to get used to it. He teaches Django certain things he needs to become a whole man, and [Django] also teaches Christoph that when life deals you these cards, here's what you've got to do."
As for the photos, so far so good. Foxx looks pretty fly in those duds, which are meant to evoke both Michael Landon's Little Joe Cartwright from "Bonanza" and Elvis in the western "Flaming Star." Waltz's character is dressed appropriately flamboyant and DiCaprio looks to be having a ball playing his first through-and-through baddie.
When the film is released (no pun intended) on Christmas Day this year, expect that signature Tarantino touch mixed with just the right amount of Sergio Leone and a lot of soul.
"All Django wants to do is get his wife," says Foxx. "He's not trying to cure or solve slavery. He just wants to get his life back."