Robert De Niro Will Not Reprising ‘Taxi Driver’ Role For Uber Ads
Of course, it does have a bit of meme potential since Taxi Driver's Travis Bickle has become a poster child for people who idolize extremely flawed characters... but that wouldn't really be in good taste especially because Bickle would likely have issues with how phony advertising is anyway.
The ad itself was supposedly going to feature De Niro delivering his famous Taxi Driver line “You talkin' to me?” The scene in question has been parodied or paid homage to in many other creative works, but the original context is that he's practicing being a “tough guy” in the mirror before he goes on a vigilante mission. Uber has historically hired a number of celebrities to advertise its products, from the taxi service Uber One to its delivery service Uber Eats. These celebrities have included Gwyneth Paltrow, Jennifer Coolidge, Trevor Noah, Sarah Silverman, and Nicholas Braun.
While Robert DeNiro will soon join the ranks of actors who have shown up in Uber ads, with many more to follow, it won't be as Travis Bickle. His rep actually spoke to The Hollywood Reporter, explaining that it would be in some other capacity, claiming “De Niro’s Uber commercial has nothing to do with his Taxi Driver character.”
The writer of Taxi Driver, Paul Schrader, also caught wind of the rumor and made a Facebook post, explaining that if the rumor was true, he had no intention of ever watching it.