Quentin Tarantino is probably Hollywood’s most prominent film nerd, and as such, he is sometimes overprotective of his favourite films. Tarantino always mentions movies that inspire his creations, so when a film blatantly copies another, it riles the Pulp Fiction director to no end.
During an interview with Jimmy Kimmel, Tarantino revealed how he believes that the franchise Hunger Games stole from Kinji Fukasaku’s 2000 movie Battle Royale. He said: “I’m a big fan of the Japanese movie Battle Royale, which is what Hunger Games was based on. Well, Hunger Games just ripped it off. That would have been awesome to have directed Battle Royale.”
Clearly, Tarantino wishes he had the chance to direct Battle Royale, which is famed for its over-the-top violent scenes and most likely influenced Kill Bill Vol. 1 & 2.
Tarantino is no stranger to lavishly praising Fukasaku’s films. In 2009, he named it his favourite film of the prior 17 years: “If there is any movie that has been made since I’ve been making movies that I wish I had made, it’s that one.”
It’s not the first time the comparisons between the two films have arisen, though it is the first time Tarantino has called it out publicly. Evidently, the general theme of ‘last one alive wins’ is present in both. However, Suzanne Collins, author of the Hunger Games books, claims she had no idea about Battle Royale, which was also based on a novel, this time by Koushun Takami.
Collins once said, “I had never heard of that book or that author until my book was turned in.” The publishers of Collins’ novel likely felt that they could get away with the similarities to Battle Royale as it was friendlier to teenagers, with much of the gory violence taken away.