Fans of Robert De Niro and director Martin Scorsese have been waiting nearly two decades for the pair to resume their iconic partnership.
However, that agonizing wait could soon be over, after star De Niro confirmed on the BBC’s The Graham Norton Show, that he and the filmmaker will reunite for the first time since Casino (1995).
He said: “Well we’re are going to do it, with (Al) Pacino, Joe Pesci and Marty (Scorsese) directing. But, I don’t know when it will come out.
“But we are planning on doing that movie.”
The movie in question is The Irishman, which is an adaptation of Charles Brandt’s novel “I Heard You Paint Houses: Frank ‘The Irishman’ Sheeran and the Inside Story of the Mafia, the Teamsters, and the Last Ride of Jimmy Hoffa”.
As that rather long winded title suggests, the story centres on Frank Sheeran, a 1970’s union official with connections to organised crime, who confessed to killing Jimmy Hoffa on his death bed.
The project is exciting for many reasons. Firstly, Al Pacino has never worked with Scorsese before. But, of course teaming the Mean Streets director with his muse for the tenth time, not to mention with Academy Award winner Joe Pesci, who arguably stole both Goodfellas (1990) and Casino, is a cinephile’s wet dream.
This is not the first time De Niro has spoken about the project. While promoting Limitless (2011) two years ago, the Raging Bull star confirmed, via Cinema Blend, that all parties had committed to the project.
He said: “It’s a movie based on a book called ‘I Heard You Paint Houses’.” He added: “And so I’m going to play that character (Sheeran), Joe Pesci’s gonna be in it and Al Pacino is going to be in it and Marty’s going to direct it… I’d never say it if I didn’t really fully have us all, you know, committed.”
However, since that announcement, director Scorsese has had a busy schedule, having completed The Wolf of Wall Street this year, with Leonardo Di Caprio.
Of course, Robert De Niro is a very reliable source, and if he says it’s going to happen, then who are we to say otherwise.
The pair have nearly reunited before, with De Niro dropping out of both Gangs of New York (2002) and The Departed (2006), because of scheduling conflicts.
Back in 2009, the Meet the Parents actor spoke to Screen Rant, about how he and Scorsese, had talked at length about developing the Frank Sheeran crime drama.
He said: “We have a more ambitious idea, hopefully, to make it a two-part type of film or two films. It’s an idea that came about from [screenwriter] Eric Roth to combine these movies using the footage from ‘Paint Houses’ to do another kind of a [film that is] reminiscent of a kind of ’8 1/2,’ ‘La Dolce Vita,’ [a] certain kind of biographical, semi-biographical type of Hollywood movie — a director and the actor — based on things Marty and I have experienced and kind of overlapping them.”
Stay tuned for more developments on The Irishman, including shooting and release dates.