Sound the alarm emojis — last night brought a new update on the slow gestation of Martin Scorsese’s next feature film project, the mob drama The Irishman. It’s already a hot property, boasting a cast including Marty favorites Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci along with newcomer Al Pacino, who already spent the last two decades acting as if he was in the third act of Goodfellas anyhow. “Martin Scorsese doing another crime epic with some of today‘s greatest living actors” turned out to be quite the tantalizing prospect, too, because last night brought the news that Netflix has purchased the rights to the film right out from under Paramount.
Like most cinephiles, I was vaguely aware that Joe Pesci has been retired from acting for a while now, but I assumed that meant he had made a few low-budget movies in the early 2000s and walked away. Imagine my surprise, then, when I realized that Pesci has made exactly two live-action movies since Lethal Weapon 4 in 1998. One was The Good Shepherd, the Robert De Niro-directed 2006 drama about the early history of the CIA. And if a close friend can lure Joe Pesci out of retirement once, maybe he can do it again.
A helpful mantra to repeat to yourself while reading this article might be “I trust Martin Scorsese. I trust Martin Scorsese. I trust Martin Scorsese.” And whatever you do, try to envision Benjamin Button and not, say, a certain baffling posthumous CGI rendering featured in Rogue One. That said, here’s the news: Martin Scorsese is planning to use advanced CGI technology to de-age Robert De Niro in The Irishman — come to think of it, they’ve been planning this movie for so long that de-aging De Niro seems reasonable.
Martin Scorsese has been talking about making The Irishman for so long that we were starting to think that the crime drama would never happen — much like his Frank Sinatra movie. And while we still have no clue if Silence is hitting theaters later this year, it looks like the iconic director is getting ready to defy our skepticism as The Irishman does indeed appear to be his next film.
It was reported last week that foreign distribution rights were being shopped around Cannes for Martin Scorsese’s long-developing mob drama The Irishman — a project that’s been gestating for so long that we started to think it might not ever happen. But STX Entertainment has snatched up the rights to distribute the film overseas, which means that The Irishman is finally happening after all.
Like most visionary directors, Martin Scorsese consistently has several projects in mind, from the long-gestating The Irishman to more recent developments, like The Devil in the White City. The director has officially extended his deal with Paramount through 2019, which means a few of those movies he’s been thinking about making will get made pretty soon, and he’s just added another project to that growing to-do list.