Basterds Celebrates NYC Premiere with Nazi-Outfitting Sponsor Hugo Boss


Quentin Tarantino was in top form on Monday night, introducing the New York premiere of Inglourious Basterds with the rousing battle cry, "Are you ready to see some Basterds fuck up some Nazis? Yeah, motherfucker!" What didn't follow were grateful thanks to the event's co-sponsor, with Tarantino asking, "Are you ready to see Hugo Boss dress up some Nazis?" That unfortunate historical reality was probably not what he or Harvey Weinstein bargained for, but that's the one they got.

A simple bit of due diligence via Google likely would have illuminated the connection, which began with Boss's joining the Nazi Party in 1931 and continued with his factory's uniform manufacturing throughout the decade and into World War II. Boss employed forced labor from Poland and France during the war itself; he died in 1948, and his company's complicity with the Nazi regime was first reported in 1997.

Count me among those who agree that this was not an ironic wink on Tarantino and the Weinsteins' part, though surely the filmmaker's satisfaction with running Nazi blood all over that sharp, enduring Third Reich couture feels even better this morning in retrospect. Anyway, there's no guilt about the Grey Goose cocktail sponsorship, at least not until the designer vodka is somehow revealed to have underwritten Stalin's pogroms and other deadly Soviet policy back in the day. I always thought of him as more of an Absolut man, myself.

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