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Martin Scorsese is making the jump to Netflix with his highly anticipated mob movie The Irishman. Specific info regarding the film has been limited, but star Al Pacino offered some interesting tidbits about The Irishman movie during a recent interview.
The Irishman is going to be big. Not only is it Martin Scorsese’s first Netflix movie – once again signifying that Netflix is a major player when it comes to movies – but the film will reunite Scorsese with actors Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci. Not only that, but the film will also reunite Heat stars De Niro and Al Pacino, and mark the first time Scorsese has worked with Pacino. In The Irishman, Pacino plays infamous Teamster leader Jimmy Hoffa, who disappeared and was believed to have been murdered in 1975. Pacino recently appeared on The Ringer podcast (via Indiewire), and revealed some details about the film.
Scorsese’s film spans several decades, and he’s employing Rogue One–style CGI to de-age the actors in the film. Pacino confirmed this, saying, “I was playing Jimmy Hoffa at the age of 39, they’re doing that on a computer.” Several tests were done to get the tech right, and Pacino says that during each take, someone would remind him how old he was supposed to be in the scene: “Someone would come up to me and say, ‘You’re 39.’ [You’d recall] some sort of memory of 39, and your body tries to acclimate to that and think that way. They remind you of it.”
The Irishman is an adaptation of the true crime book I Heard You Paint Houses, telling the story of contract killer Frank “The Irishman” Sheeran. Sheeran claimed to have killed Teamster leader Jimmy Hoffa, who disappeared in 1975. De Niro is playing Sheeran. Here’s the book’s synopsis.
“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 Sheeran 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, the Irishman 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 including those of Joey Gallo and JFK, and provides rare insight to a chapter in American history. Charles Brandt has written a page-turner that has become a true crime classic.
In addition to Pacino, De Niro and Pesci, The Irishman also stars Anna Paquin, Bobby Cannavale, Harvey Keitel, and Ray Romano. No release date has been set yet, but hopefully it’ll be sooner rather than later.