Formerly known as “I Heard You Paint Houses” — and retitled “The Irishman” — this potential Martin Scorsese vehicle has been in the works for a while, but recently it seems to have picked up steam. Back in September it was reported that the “Raging Bull,” “Goodfellas” and “Casino” duo of Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci were joining the project and it now seems it might happen a lot sooner than we thought.
Speaking at BAFTA’s A Life In Pictures Q&A, Scorsese has revealed that “The Irishman” is putting together financing and should it all fall into place, the film could go in front of cameras next year. The true story centers on Frank Sheeran, a WWII veteran who led a colorful life as a high ranking officer in the International Brotherhood of Teamsters while also dabbling in organized crime as a highly-sought-after hitman. He reportedly also had ties to the deaths of President Kennedy and Jimmy Hoffa.
Early word on the project had it envisioned as ambitious two part film with Steve Zaillian penning the first half and Eric Roth the second. The second film was to involve a relationship between an actor and a director (think something along the lines of “8 1/2“), with Scorsese and De Niro acting alongside each other, but there’s no word if this is still the plan (though the idea of exploring classic-era filmmaking through the lens of the mafia sound pretty damn great).
For now, Scorsese works towards completing his first 3D film, “Hugo Cabret,” which has run into some slight production delays. But nothing really to worry about as the film is still headed for a December 9, 2011 release. So of course, with Scorsese prepping a film for release next year, we don’t imagine he will get started on anything new until the second half of 2011 at the earliest.