De Niro, Pesci and Scorsese Reunite for ‘The Irishman’ on Netflix

Robert De Niro is starring in Martin Scorsese's "The Irishman"
Robert De Niro is starring in Martin Scorsese's "The Irishman," Photos: ©PATRICKMCMULLAN.COM

Montauk homeowner Robert De Niro is looking fearsome in a newly released, fan-made poster for The Irishman, his hotly-anticipated gangster film, directed by Martin Scorsese, for Netflix. Though almost surely fan made (we’re waiting on official word from Netflix), the slickly designed poster highlights the fact that the biggest names in mob movies are reuniting again: De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pecsi and, of course, Scorsese behind the camera.

Even if the poster isn’t an actual Netflix creation—it features a behind-the-scenes image shot in New York City and made public in November—it still offers us an opportunity to discuss this hugely exciting film. It also happens to be the best fan-designed poster out there, and there are quite a few.

What we know so far, aside from the stars and the director, is that Netflix is reportedly spending as much as $8 billion on original content in 2018, and The Irishman is the crown jewel. The film is based on 2004 Charles Brandt book I Heard You Paint Houses, which is about Teamsters union leader Jimmy Hoffa and hitman Frank ‘the Irishman’ Sheeran, who told Brandt that he carried out more than 25 hits for the mob and for Hoffa before the union leader vanished in 1975—he was officially declared dead in 1982, though his body has never been found).

The term “paint houses” is code for murdering someone, referring to the blood that covers the walls and floors of a house during a hit. According to the book description for I Heard You Paint Houses, Sheeran learned his deadly trade in the U.S. Army, where he served 411 days of active combat in World War II. He later became a hitman for crime boss Russell Bufalino, who eventually ordered Sheeran to kill his friend Hoffa.

De Niro plays Sheeran in the picture while Pacino plays Hoffa and Pesci plays Bufalino. The Bufalino role brings Pesci back to the screen for the first time since 2010 when he played Charlie Bontempo in Love Ranch, though he voiced Komar in the English version of the Russian animated movie A Warrior’s Tail in 2015. Before Love Ranch, Pesci only has two other film credits: The Good Sheperd (directed by De Niro) in 2006 and Lethal Weapon 4 in 1998, so The Irishman is quite an event.

Fans are especially thrilled to see the legendary stars of Goodfellas and Casino, De Niro and Pesci, get together with Scorsese, their director for both films. De Niro and Pacino also reunite, adding another treat for fans of their previous collaborations, such as 2008’s A Rightous Kill, Michael Mann‘s Heat in 1995 and Francis Ford Coppola‘s The Godfather: Part II in 1974.

De Niro and Scorsese are longtime collaborators, creating such films together as Mean Streets, Taxi Driver, New York, New York, Raging Bull, The King of Comedy, Cape Fear and The Audition along with the previously mentioned Goodfellas and Casino.

The Irishman is due for release in 2018, though Netflix has yet to confirm whether it will show in theaters as well as on the company’s streaming service.

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