Maynard's Pawn Shop
If the feature films in Quentin Tarantino’s filmography have a genuine cult following, Pulp Fiction remains the most celebrated. Awarded a Palme d’Or at Cannes thanks to the insistence of Clint Eastwood, then president of the jury, it has given rise to a genre of its own.
As with Reservoir Dogs, Quentin Tarantino is keen to shoot his new film in and around Los Angeles. Unlike his first attempt, however, his more comfortable budget now allows him to count on several locations. The most expensive setting is Jack Rabbit Slim’s, the 1950s restaurant in which John Travolta and Uma Thurman dance to Chuck Berry. A fictional place made entirely out of a warehouse in Culver City. The storefront, belonging to a former bowling alley, is still visible at 1432 Flower Street in Glendale. For the pawn shop scene, where Butch (Bruce Willis) and Marsellus (Ving Rhames) are taken prisoner by the dastardly Maynard (Duane Whitaker) and Zed (Peter Greene), the director managed to get permission to shoot in a real pawn shop in Canoga Park. Stage manager Bob Craft is commissioned to tour Los Angeles in search of the pawn shop and other filming locations. Many businesses refused his proposal.“Pawnshops are robbed a lot. They’re very protective.” he said years later in the columns of Los Angeles Magazine. Finally, the rare pearl is found.
On the other hand, Quentin Tarantino must make a cross on the basement where Butch and Marsellus are locked up. In this part of the city, no building has one. The vast majority of businesses and other homes in this part of the valley were built quickly, so cellars are extremely rare. Once again, the director retreats to the Culver City studios where Maynard’s basement is being fashioned, where The Cramp (Stephen Hibbert) is waiting. Many of the locations have disappeared since the film was released. The restaurant in the opening scene, for example, or the motel where Butch retreats after sabotaging the rigged boxing match, have been destroyed.
Filled with subtle or more obvious references, full of surprises, such as Steve Buscemi’s appearance as a waiter in the Jack Rabbit Slim’s sequence, Pulp Fiction has created a mythology of its own in American cinema and invented a new form of language in the process. Produced for the sum of 8.5 million, of which five were redistributed to the actors, the feature film managed to collect more than 200 million. Its triumph at Cannes marked the beginning of its incredible rise at the box office and in pop culture, where it is now an absolute classic. A film driven by the fervor of a director who had to overcome many obstacles to impose his vision. His script was considered too violent or not coherent enough by many studio bosses, before finding a buyer. The public and the critics on their side have shown that Quentin Tarantino was right to hang on. A director also responsible for the resurrection of John Travolta.
In Pulp Fiction,the word “Fuck” is uttered 265 times. The record is held by Swearnet: The Movie, with 935 times.
Crown Pawn Shop
It’s not the most luxurious or even the largest pawn shop in California, but it’s one of the most famous. At the Crown Pawn Shop, visitors come to sell, buy or simply to experience the atmosphere of one of the cult scenes from Pulp Fiction.
Located north of Malibu, in the heart of a small shopping mall, the Crown Pawn Shop has been building on the success of Pulp Fiction since 1994 and welcomes fans of the film with a smile, as the photos on the website illustrate. Opened in 1992, this modest business suddenly became famous with the release of Quentin Tarantino’s movie. The owners have taken care not to change anything in the decoration.
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Cult! movies: 100 mythical places of cinema [French Edition]
Since the dawn of cinema, films have invaded the world and highlighted sometimes unexpected places. Every film location has its secrets. The latter are sometimes as exciting as the feature films themselves.
Did you know that the cemetery where the final duel of The Good, the Bad and the Ugly was built from scratch and that no body lies there? Or that the bus ofInto The Wild has been moved to discourage fans from spending the night there? From the story of the construction of The Bridge on the River Kwai to the incredible encounter during the shooting of the last scene ofIndiana Jones and the Last Crusadeembark on an exciting world tour with the greatest stars of the seventh art. Shiver in the real haunted house ofAmityville and discover the terrifying anecdotes of the making ofApocalypse Now in the Philippines. Visit the building of Blade Runner before stopping at Hogwarts and finally landing in Jurassic Parkin the middle of the Hawaiian archipelago. What if we also took you behind the scenes of the making of the Hobbits’ village of Lord of the Rings ?
Produced by a team of pop-culture specialists and enhanced by numerous anecdotes, Cult! movies tells the secrets of the places that made the history of cinema.
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Discover all the places Pulp Fiction on our map
By Gilles Rolland
Passionné de cinéma, de rock and roll, de séries TV et de littérature. Rédacteur de presse et auteur des livres Le Heavy Metal au cinéma, Paroles de fans Guns N' Roses, Paroles de fans Rammstein et Welcome to my Jungle : 100 albums rock et autres anecdotes dépareillées. Adore également voyager à la recherche des lieux les plus emblématiques de la pop culture.