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.

Earlier this summer, STX Entertainment acquired the rights to distribute The Irishman domestically, which was the first solid evidence that this film is actually, finally happening. According to Deadline, Media Asia has snagged the Chinese distribution rights to the film, which reunites Scorsese with Robert De Niro and is said to be heading into production in 2017. Scorsese is reportedly eyeing a late 2018 release date — in the middle of awards season, unsurprisingly.

The Irishman is based on Charles Brandt’s book I Heard You Paint Houses, in which former hitman Frank “The Irishman” Sheeran makes a startling revelation to the author from his deathbed: He knows what happened to Teamsters union boss Jimmy Hoffa, whose disappearance in 1975 became the source of widespread fascination and speculation. According to Sheeran, “I heard you paint houses” is something Hoffa said to him when they first met — a reference to his particularly gruesome line of work.

The highly-anticipated film will mark the fourth time Scorsese and De Niro have worked together, and the first Scorsese film for Al Pacino (which is still kind of surprising). Goodfellas and Casino star Joe Pesci was originally set to appear in The Irishman, but as the film got closer to reality, he ultimately backed out. Back in June, De Niro and Pesci appeared together at the Guys’ Choice Awards (of all places), where the former ribbed the latter for his decision to drop out.

Meanwhile, Paramount has yet to confirm a 2016 release for Silence, Scorsese’s new drama starring Liam Neeson and Andrew Garfield. As of now, it looks like the studio is waiting to see how a couple of their other possible awards contenders are received before committing to a release date.