Quentin Tarantino is grateful for his unsuccessful acting career, because it led him to find his true calling as a director. Tarantino chatted with Jimmy Fallon on Wednesday night about his quick role as an Elvis impersonator on the episode of The Golden Girls titled “Sophia’s Wedding: Part 1” during the show’s fourth season and how it helped fund his first film Reservoir Dogs.
“Before I did Reservoir Dogs, I had a very unsuccessful acting career,” the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood director told Fallon. “However, one of the few jobs I did get…and not because I did a wonderful audition, but simply because they sent my picture in and they said, ‘He’s got it!’ was for an Elvis impersonator on The Golden Girls.”
He adds, “It became a two-part Golden Girls. So I got paid residuals for both parts. And, It was so popular they put it on a Best of The Golden Girls, and I got residuals every time that showed. So I got paid maybe, I don’t know, $650 for the episode, but by the time the residuals were over, three years later, I made like $3,000. And that kept me going during our pre-production time trying to get Reservoir Dogs going.”
NBC’s The Golden Girls ran for seven seasons from 1985-1992 and told the stories of four active seniors living in Miami Beach: Blanche Devereaux (Rue McClanahan), Dorothy Zbornak (Bea Arthur), Rose Nylund (Betty White), and Sophia Petrillo (Estelle Getty). All seasons are currently available to stream via Hulu.