Back in May, rumors were swirling that Joe Pesci was attached for Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman,” but it was unclear if the semi-retired actor would actually reunite with his “Goodfellas” co-star, Robert De Niro, for the $100-million gangster movie. Now, it seems that Pesci is officially on board to star as mafioso Russell Bufalino, Deadline reports.
Netflix acquired “The Irishman” earlier this year, and shooting is scheduled to start next month. The movie marks the ninth collaboration between Scorsese and De Niro, who plays Frank “The Irishman” Sheeran, a mob hitman who supposedly was involved in the death of Jimmy Hoffa.
Steve Zaillian (“Moneyball”) adapted “The Irishman” from Charles Brandt‘s 2003 book, “I Heard You Paint Houses,” about Sheeran’s career as a hitman. In certain scenes, De Niro will be made to look around 30 years old by VFX company Industrial Light & Magic.
Director of photography Rodrigo Prieto will shoot “The Irishman,” having previously served as cinematographer on Scorsese’s “Silence” and “The Wolf of Wall Street.”
Paramount Pictures, which still has a production deal with Scorsese through 2019, was originally planning on producing “The Irishman” before Netflix took all world rights in February. The project was first announced back in 2008.