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Quentin Tarantino Remembers ‘Once Upon a Time’ Character Rick Dalton: ‘He Was a Big Hit’

Quentin Tarantino eulogized his fictional “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” star Rick Dalton on a recent episode of his Video Archives podcast.

On May 19, Tarantino announced on The Video Archives’ Twitter that the fictional character had passed away, writing, “We are saddened by the news of the passing of actor Rick Dalton, best known for his roles in the hit TV series ‘Bounty Law’ and ‘The Fireman’ trilogy.”

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On the podcast, co-hosted by his “Pulp Fiction” co-writer Roger Avary, Tarantino paid his respects to the late “Once Upon a Time” character with the help of Avary’s daughter Gala, a producer of the podcast.

“On May 19, 2023, actor Rick Dalton passed away peacefully in his home in Honolulu, Hawaii,” said Gala. “He is survived by his wife, Francesca. Dalton was beloved by fans of ‘Bounty Law,’ where he played bounty hunter Jake Cahill for five seasons, and also for his iconic role as Eddie Karpinski, the flamethrower-wielding vigilante in ‘The Fireman,’ ‘The Fireman Part 2,’ and ‘The Fireman 3: CIA Crackdown.’ But he was so much more than that, with a career that spanned over 20 years. On this episode of the Video Archives podcast, we invite you to remember Rick Dalton.”

Tarantino continued on to reference a conflict that Dalton was engaged in, as portrayed in “Once Upon a Time.”

“He also had a thing that happened with him in the late ’60s where three hippies were bursting into his house, and they were tripping, and they had a gun with them, and his stunt double basically beat the brains in of two of them, and Rick set the other one on fire with the flamethrower from ‘The 14 Fists of McCluskey,'” Tarantino explained.

“So he got invited to, like, the Republican Convention, alright, because it became this thing for, like, Nixon’s Silent Majority. And he’s a lifelong Democrat but he went and they fucking dug him. Rick was very happy being dug,” said Tarantino. “But they put him on Johnny Carson after that, and he was a big hit on ‘The Johnny Carson Show,’ and then all of a sudden, because of the notoriety, he started doing better TV shows. He went from, like, doing ‘Land of the Giants’ and ‘Green Hornet’ to doing ‘Mission: Impossible.'”

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