Well, this is certainly surprising. After hearing that Martin Scorsese’s upcoming gangster movie, The Irishman, which will mark his ninth collaboration with Robert De Niro, was going to be heading to Paramount, Indiewire now reports that Netflix has swooped in to pick up it up. Sources say the studio got cold feet on the apparently “risky” project and backed out, allowing the streaming service to grab the worldwide rights to the $100 million epic.
Based off Charles’ Brandt’s novel I Heard You Paint Houses, the Steve Zaillian-scripted film will chronicle the life of “Frank “The Irishman” Sheeran, a mob hitman whose illustrious career is today best known for a supposed involvement in the death of Jimmy Hoffa.” This one’s been in development for a very long time now, so to see that there’s finally some tangible signs of progress being made is very encouraging.
What’s particularly interesting about the project though is that De Niro will be de-aged for it, with effects wizards ILM set to make him look 30 years old. Not only that, but the film will also reunite the actor with Al Pacino and possibly Joe Pesci, signalling that this could very well be another legendary gangster flick, right up there with some of the genre’s greats (think: Casino and Goodfellas, among others).
Even if it isn’t though, The Irishman is still another huge acquisition for Netflix, who continue to make impressive steps forward into the world of distribution. It’s pretty shocking that they’ve gotten as far as they have, with the ability to take on major studios for rights to some pretty big films, but here we are and honestly, it’s no bad thing. Some of the best content, be it in the form of movies or television, comes from Netflix and it’s great to see them continuing to take on risky, exciting projects like this one.
No release date has been set yet for The Irishman, but with the wheels now in motion, expect to hear more soon. Until then, take to the comments section and let us know if you’re excited to see what Scorsese, Pacino and De Niro have cooked up here.