It wasn’t an F-bomb that set off a gasp in the press room at the Golden Globe Awards on Sunday night, it was the n-word. Quentin Tarantino employed the controversial term in the context of discussing his film, Django Unchained, for which the writer/director won best screenplay. The movie, which employs the slur over and over again in the course of its 165 minutes, has struck controversy in the African American community for its portrayal of a slave-turned-bounty hunter in antebellum Mississippi.
When asked if he was ever shaken by the use of the n-word while making Django, Tarantino responded:
“If somebody is out there actually saying when it comes to the word n—–, the fact that I was using it in the movie more than it was being used in the antebellum south in Mississippi, then feel free to make that case. But no one’s actually making that case. They are saying I should lie, that I should whitewash, that I should massage, and I never do that when it comes to my characters.”
The reporters in the pressroom were taken aback by his use of the word, but Don Cheadle, who followed Tarantino backstage for his win for House of Lies, used the opportunity to make a subtle point.
When he took the stage, he said: “Please no n—– questions. Black people questions are alright.”