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Quentin Tarantino inks deal for two books on films

Quentin Tarantino's first book in the deal, a

Quentin Tarantino's first book in the deal, a novelization of "Once Upon a Time in .... Hollywood," will be released first as a mass-market paperback.  Credit: Invision / AP / Jordan Strauss

Quentin Tarantino's next work of imagination will be in book form.

The Oscar-winning filmmaker has a two-book deal with Harper, beginning with a novelization of his movie "Once Upon a Time in ... Hollywood" that is scheduled for next summer. "Once Upon a Time" will be a true Tarantino production: The book will come out first as a mass-market paperback, like the old pulp novels the filmmaker loves, and will offer "a fresh, playful and shocking departure from the film," according to Harper.

The film version of "Once Upon a Time in ... Hollywood" was released in 2019 and stars Leonardo DiCaprio as a TV actor and Brad Pitt as his stunt double. Nominated for 10 Academy Awards and winner of two, the movie is set in Los Angeles in 1969, around the time of the killings by Charles Manson's followers.

"In the '70s movie novelizations were the first adult books I grew up reading," Tarantino said in a statement Tuesday. "And to this day I have a tremendous amount of affection for the genre. So as a movie-novelization aficionado, I’m proud to announce 'Once Upon a Time in ... Hollywood' as my contribution to this often marginalized, yet beloved sub-genre in literature. I’m also thrilled to further explore my characters and their world in a literary endeavor that can (hopefully) sit alongside its cinematic counterpart."

Tarantino’s second book will be the nonfiction "Cinema Speculation," which Harper is calling "a deep dive into the movies of the 1970s" that draws in part on the director's admiration for the late New Yorker critic Pauline Kael. A release date has not been determined.

"The book will be a rich mix of essays, reviews, personal writing, and tantalizing " 'what ifs,' from one of cinema’s most celebrated filmmakers, and its most devoted fan," according to Harper, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

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