Kurt Russell and Jennifer Jason Leigh are practically attached at the hip in Quentin Tarantino’s western The Hateful Eight, which opens in theaters on Dec. 25. In reality, their characters are handcuffed — she’s a dangerous fugitive, he’s the bounty hunter bringing her in for a proper hanging. “Kurt and I are essentially the most dysfunctional couple since Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” Leigh told EW in May.
The couple graces one of the exclusive new character posters for the snowy epic, set in Wyoming in the decade following the Civil War. Walrus-stached John Ruth and bruised Daisy Domergue are forced to delay their stagecoach ride to Red Rock and seek shelter at Minnie’s Haberdashery when the winter weather shuts down a mountain pass.
There are six others at Minnie’s, and none of them seem very trustworthy: Major Marquis Warren (Samuel L. Jackson), a black Civil War veteran; Chris Mannix (Walton Goggins), who claims to be the town’s new sheriff; Bob (Demian Bichir), Minnie’s manager while the owner is visiting her mother; Oswaldo Mobray (Tim Roth), the hangman of Red Rock; cattleman Joe Gage (Michael Madsen); and Confederate general Sanford Smithers (Bruce Dern).
Tarantino has promised that the music will be written by spaghetti-western legend Ennio Morricone, his first western score in some four decades. With colorful characters like this, he shouldn’t be starved for inspiration.