Knoxville native Quentin Tarantino is more than a superstar director and the torch bearer of cool if you check out askmen.com.
The men's pop culture website includes Tarantino on its list of the Top 49 Influential Men for 2012, and it is all because of his new movie coming later this year.
Askmen.com explains the selection by posting, "the buzz for Quentin Tarantino's latest riff on the spaghetti Western is so hot, you could boil a can of beans on it ... (we're) tightening our boots for what's sure to be the guy movie of the year."
The film in question is "Django Unchained," out Dec. 25.
Tarantino is quoted as referring to the movie as a "Southern," as opposed to a Western.
"It turns the six shooter and lasso to the Deep South, rather than the American West," askmen.com states.
It stars Jamie Foxx as Django (the "D" is silent), who is a slave freed by a bounty hunter (Christoph Waltz) to kill the white people — and free his wife from Leonardo DiCaprio, who plays a pimp and plantation owner.
Askmen.com says it has "been salivating over every production photo and snippet of footage Tarantino's leaked (we don't even have a full trailer yet)."
At the No. 28 spot, Tarantino settles in askmen.com's list between movie star Michael Fassbender (at No. 27) and daredevil Felix Baumgartner (No. 29), the guy who broke the sound barrier with his leap from space this past Sunday.
Topping the list is James Bond. Well, duh.
Of course agent 007 is at the top.
Though he was born in Knoxville, Tarantino, the son of actor/magician Tony Tarantino and nurse Connie McHugh, was 2 years old when he moved to Torrance, Calif., with his mother.
His parents separated before his birth, and he was raised by his mother.
Tarantino keeps in touch with his Knoxville roots and has referenced the city in his movies. In 2011, he also visited Knoxville for an alleged scouting mission for a film.
Former Knoxville resident Jason Mesnick, who was a runner-up on "The Bachelor," is going to be a father.
According to the Associated Press, he and Molly Malaney Mesnick's baby is due in March.
Molly is also a former participant in "The Bachelor." The AP reports the couple met on the 13th season of "The Bachelor."
Molly was the runner-up to the winner Melissa Rycroft. Mesnick proposed to Rycroft but ended up breaking up later, saying he still had feelings for Molly. The two married in February 2010.
Jason lived in Knoxville as a child and attended Temple Beth El, off Kingston Pike and near the University of Tennessee campus.
Knoxville native Christina Hendricks is dying to be part of the undead.
The "Mad Men" actress, who was born in Knoxville and lived here briefly, has informed the producers of "The Walking Dead" that she would like to be a zombie on the show — just a bit part and in full makeup.
Both "Mad Men" and "The Walking Dead" air on AMC.
At the 2011 Golden Globes, "Dead" makeup effects artist Greg Nicotero heard of Hendricks' interest and knew it'd be an impossible task.
"I thought, 'Dude, there is no way we could make her look ugly.' Besides the fact she is just beautiful, there is just no way to do it and not have people know it is her," Nicotero says.
"That would take away from the story."
Terry Morrow may be reached at 865-342-6445 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
© 2012, Knoxville News Sentinel Co.
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