Hateful Eight: How Channing Tatum Got his Role in Tarantino’s Hateful Eight

Movie star Channing Tatum has been “trying to keep it a little bit of a secret” that he appears in Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight, in which he has a small but significant part

But the actor did reveal on Friday’s Tonight Show that he emailed Tarantino for a month about his role in the film.

“I basically sent about an email a day for about a month just threatening any other actors that might be up for the role,” Tatum said. “I was just praying that no one really tough was up for the role.” He joked that he and the other actors could be locked in a room without doors and windows and whoever came out of the room would get the role. “I’m so happy that he didn’t say, ‘Well Mike Tyson is up for this role.'”

The Magic Mike star said that while there’s “an alumni” in Tarantino films and that actors in his films are “an actual family,” he got nervous during his first table read where he met the Hateful Eight‘s cast members, including Bruce Dern, Kurt Russell and Jennifer Jason Leigh. Tatum said of his feeling at the time: “I start getting terrified. I’m just shaking. I’ve never been so nervous.”

Tatum said that during the table read, he and Dern had to shake hands for a scene from the film. “I made this really dumb, over-zealous decision and I pull him in really close, and this is at a table read, and I almost pull Bruce Dern out of his chair and he’s like, ‘You jerk! You almost pulled by arm out of the socket!'”

“I’m like, I just almost killed one of the best actors of our time.’ And I’m mortified,” Tatum said.

Samuel L. Jackson, Tim Roth and Michael Madsen also star in the film, set for limited release Christmas Day as a road show and wide release on December 31.