In early 2018, Uma Thurman decided to speak out about a disturbing and unsettling incident which occurred during filming of the famous Kill Bill series. During the last days of filming for the 2003 and 2004 movies in Mexico, Thurman was heavily pressured by director Quentin Tarantino to drive the Volkswagen Karmann Ghia which was featured at the beginning and end of Kill Bill Vol. 2.
Thurman had insisted that she did not feel comfortable driving the vehicle, which was reportedly not functioning properly, and made a point to include that she was not trained as a stunt driver.
Thurman opened up to the New York Time, saying, “Quentin came in my trailer and didn’t like to hear no, like any director. He was furious because I’d cost them a lot of time. But I was scared. He said: ‘I promise you the car is fine. It’s a straight piece of road.’”
Tarantino demanded that she follow his instructions, saying: “ ‘Hit 40 miles per hour or your hair won’t blow the right way and I’ll make you do it again.’ But that was a deathbox that I was in. The seat wasn’t screwed down properly. It was a sand road and it was not a straight road.”
Uma Thurman reluctantly got in the car and began to drive. As the Volkswagen began picking up speed, Thurman struggled to stay on the road. The car began swerving uncontrollably and eventually slammed into a palm tree on the side of the road.
Thurman spoke of the harrowing ordeal, saying, “The steering wheel was at my belly and my legs were jammed under me. I felt this searing pain and thought, ‘Oh my God, I’m never going to walk again. When I came back from the hospital in a neck brace with my knees damaged and a large massive egg on my head and a concussion, I wanted to see the car and I was very upset. Quentin and I had an enormous fight, and I accused him of trying to kill me. And he was very angry at that, I guess understandably, because he didn’t feel he had tried to kill me.
The on-set car accident jeopardized Uma Thurman’s relationship with Tarantino for years to come, and rightfully so.