Quentin Tarantino fans have had to wait six years for his next movie, ''Kill Bill: Volume 1,'' which opens in October, but they'll only have to wait four months for the film after that. Variety reports that Miramax has set a release date of Feb. 20, 2004, for ''Kill Bill: Volume 2.'' That decision could mean double the trophies for Tarantino or star Uma Thurman at awards time.
When Miramax and Tarantino decided a few weeks ago to cut the three-hour kung fu revenge epic in twain, the move raised the question of which of the two eligible films to submit for Academy Awards consideration. (Warner Bros., the studio behind 2003's two ''Matrix'' sequels, has resolved a similar dilemma by deciding to submit only the concluding installment, November's ''The Matrix Revolutions.'') By moving ''Volume 2'' into next year, it makes Tarantino's opus eligible in two separate years. Of course, if the oldtimers at the Academy can't make it all the way through ''Volume 1'''s already notorious ''House of Blue Leaves'' sequence -- a 25-minute fight scene that's said to be outrageously bloody and violent -- Oscar nominations may be a moot point.