Pacino, Pesci interested in De Niro, Scorsese true life mob film
We heard back in 2008 that Robert De Niro was teaming up again with Martin Scorsese, thankfully, in a film called The Irishman, once called I Heard You Paint Houses, about Frank "the Irishman" Sheeran, a mob assassin who is rumoured to have committed over 25 murders and apparently admitted to killing Jimmy Hoffa.
Sounded interesting, and the film will be adapted from the book by Charles Brandt which has received a lot of positive reviews and tells the story that Sheeran told Brandt directly over some five years.
Before I get to the really exciting news about the film, lets look at the story in the book by Charles Brandt, the book itself is called I Hear You Paint Houses (Amazon.co.uk / Amazon.com), and there's an explanation of just why from the Amazon blurb right up front.
"I heard you paint houses" are the first words Jimmy Hoffa ever spoke to Frank "the Irishman" Sheeran. To paint a house is to kill a man. The paint is the blood that splatters on the walls and floors.
In the course of nearly five years of recorded interviews Frank Sheeran confessed to Charles Brandt that he handled more than twenty-five hits for the mob, and for his friend Hoffa.
Sheeran learned to kill in the U.S. Army, where he saw an astonishing 411 days of active combat duty in Italy during World War II. After returning home he became a hustler and hit man, working for legendary crime boss Russell Bufalino. Eventually he would rise to a position of such prominence that in a RICO suit then-U.S. Attorney Rudy Giuliani would name him as one of only two non-Italians on a list of 26 top mob figures.
When Bufalino ordered Sheeran to kill Hoffa, he did the deed, knowing that if he had refused he would have been killed himself. Sheeran's important and fascinating story includes new information on other famous murders, and provides rare insight to a chapter in American history. Charles Brandt has written a page-turner that is destined to become a true crime classic.
So it's a true story, a mob story, and one about betrayals galore and bound to be containing a lot of fear and intimidation. Sounds like a perfect mob film for Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro, who back in 2008 was lined up to play the lead of Sheeran.
However they have the rumour that a certain Al Pacino is also interested in the film, and no wonder. Both Robert De Niro and Pacino haven't had the best of careers since their hay day, De Niro especially, and a mob film with Martin Scorsese behind it has success and powerful written all over it.
Pacino and De Niro recently appeared next to each other in the film Heat, Michael Mann's remake of his own film, and Righteous Kill. Heat was good, and Righteous Kill had a lot going for it, and a lot not. However it's fair to say that Pacino and De Niro were very good together and I was drawn back to the power of them as actors, not as shadows and celebrity images of their former selves, but as the power house actors they once were. It was a whiff, but it was there.
So the idea that they could be teaming up again in this film has me filled with anticipation. Mobs; Betrayal; Killers; Posturing; Huge personalities; Scorsese; De Niro; Pacino, and Pesci. If this comes together it could be their best performances for a very, very long time.