Tarantino's past films have made actors and been made by them. So it must be immensely frustrating for him when his first choice castings go wayward; and it's probably not in the audience's best interests either. Indeed, Kurt Russell is now the second actor to have bailed on the role of Ace Woody, originally having taken on Kevin Costner's mantle. No statement from Russell has been released on the matter!

Ace Woody is one of the film's many villains (or in true Tarantino style, will they be more nuanced anti-heroes?), a cold-blooded slaver who pits them against each other in bloody, gladiatorial style. Are the actors getting cold feet due to the nature of the role?

Sacha Baron Cohen's departure is more down to scheduling conflicts precluding his involvement. Reports say (the loveable) Baron Cohen was only involved in a cameo, so sad as his post-Dictatorial face not appearing in Quentin's inevitably stylish thriller, it's not going to impact on production too much.

Personally, if the Costner/Russell look is what Tarantino is going for, it's surely only a matter of time until this guy gets the call... No? Just me?

Fingers crossed anyway, the film's cast still looks mighty fine and Django Unchained opens in the UK on 18 January 2013.