Titles can come from many places — song lyrics, quips from friends, even advertisements on the side of buses if you’re really looking. But the inspiration for Edgar Wright’s newest film, Last Night in Soho, or at least its title, came from somewhere else entirely: fellow filmmaker Quentin Tarantino. Well, at least partially.
Wright revealed to Total Film Magazine that Tarantino introduced him to the title by way of a song, “Last Night in Soho,” written in 1968 by a band he had featured in 2007’s Death Proof named Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick & Tich. (What a band name.) The song came up during a conversation surrounding Death Proof in which, according to Wright, Tarantino called the song the “best title music for a film that’s never been made.”
With the song originating from the 1960s, the time period in which a portion of Wright’s thriller is set, it seemed a perfect fit, and according to the director, using the title was something he couldn’t escape. His initial idea for the film was to title it Red Light Area, but as Wright revealed, it neared too closely to a movie titled Red Lights, starring Cillian Murphy. The answer, apparently, was “staring [him] in the face” all along:
“Quentin was deep into Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, so I hadn’t really had time to tell him. And then it was in the trades. I said, ‘Hey, did you hear what my movie’s called?’ He said, ‘Yeah, I read it.’ I said, ‘Are you annoyed with me?’ He goes, ‘You know what? Only you could make that movie.’ I said, ‘Well, I’m going to thank you on the end credits for giving me the song.’ He goes, ‘OK, but I’ve got to fess up now. What I said about it being the best end-credits song for a movie that doesn’t exist, is something that [writer, director, producer] Allison Anders used to say. So if you credit me, you’ve also got to credit her.’ So on the thanks list, A to T, Allison Anders and Quentin Tarantino are the first and last people thanked.”
Wright also revealed in a tweet following the Total Film interview that he had informed Anders of her role in influencing him, and that she had sent him a seven-inch single of “Last Night in Soho” on vinyl as thanks, which he now has displayed on his mantel at home.
Last Night in Soho is directed by Wright, who co-wrote the screenplay with Krysty Wilson-Cairns, and stars Thomasin McKenzie, Anya Taylor-Joy, Matt Smith, and the late Diana Rigg. The psychological thriller will be released exclusively in theaters on October 29, just in time for Halloween.
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