John Travolta And Samuel L Jackson Weren’t Tarantino’s First Choice Pulp Fiction Leads

by : Shola Lee on :
John Travolta And Samuel L Jackson Weren’t Tarantino’s First Choice Pulp Fiction LeadsPictureLux/The Hollywood Archive/BFA/Alamy

It’s hard to imagine Pulp Fiction without John Travolta and Samuel L Jackson, but they weren’t the director’s first choice.

Quentin Tarantino‘s critically acclaimed film could’ve been very different, according to the original cast list.


Travolta starred as Vincent Vega and Jackson as Jules Winnfield in the iconic flick, but Tarantino apparently had other actors in mind, with the pair actually being second choice for the roles.

Pulp Fiction (MiraMax Films) Miramax Films

Bestselling author Don Winslow took to Twitter to reveal the ‘rough cast list’ for the movie, with Tarantino’s top picks for each character marked by three stars.

Of course, fans were quick to pick up on how different the list was to the final cast.


According to the list, Tarantino wanted Michael Madsen from his previous film Reservoir Dogs, to play Vincent.

Film & TV

People Praising Samuel L. Jackson Thriller That's Just Been Added To Netflix

published at16 days ago

However, Travolta was still considered a ‘strong, strong, strong, second choice’. Meanwhile, Jackson was initially wanted for the role of Marsellus Wallace, who was eventually played by Ving Rhames, with Laurence Fishburne being the first choice for the role of Jules.

Interestingly, Uma Thurman who played the iconic Mia Wallace wasn’t on the list of actors Tarantino noted down for the part.


Fans were also quick to note how many times Gary Oldman featured on the list, with the actor written down for the role of Pumpkin, Vincent and Lance.

One fan commented: ‘Gary Oldman can play ALL the parts’. While another added: ‘man he REALLY wanted to work with Gary Oldman’.

The pair had actually already worked together on True Romance (1993) which was released the year before Pulp Fiction, though we still think Oldman has a shot at Honey Bunny.

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]

Most Read StoriesMost Read


One Dead And Five Injured After Mass Shooting Inside US Church

Shola Lee

Shola Lee began her journalism career while studying for her undergraduate degree at Queen Mary, University of London and Columbia University in New York. She has written for the Columbia Spectator, QM Global Bloggers, CUB Magazine, UniDays, and Warner Brothers' Wizarding World Digital. Recently, Shola took part in the 2021 BAFTA Crew and BBC New Creatives programme before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news, trending stories, and features.

Topics: Film and TV, John Travolta, Quentin Tarantino, Samuel L Jackson


  1. @DonWinslow/Twitter