Speaking in a recent interview with CBS Sunday Morning to promote the novelization of his 2019 film starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt, the Oscar-winning writer-director opened up a bit about casting Reynolds in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, even though they never got to shoot any footage.
“I got a chance to rehearse with him,” Tarantino said in the interview taking place at his Los Angeles theater, the New Beverly Cinema. “I’m officially the last role he played because he came to the script reading. So, that was his last acting.”
The legendary Reynolds was set to play George Spahn, the real-life owner and operator of the Southern California ranch used for several Westerns before business dried up and Charles Manson and his “Family” moved in, as depicted in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. Bruce Dern took over the role after Reynolds passed.
Tarantino said on CBS Sunday Morning he knew Reynolds died happy having been cast in the major Hollywood project. “The night he died, what he was doing before he passed on was he was running lines with is assisstant,” Tarantino said. “That’s like sad and beautiful at the same time. He was so happy. I can honestly say he died happy. I am not saying he died happy because of me, but he was definitely happy when he passed on.”
Watch the interview below.