HOLLYWOOD – Robert De Niro is so especially fantastic that in order to celebrate his 70th birthday 5 FACTS didn’t seem enough.
So before you can say ‘Are you talking to me?’ here are 5 more FACTS about Uncle Bobby.
1. No one has ever seen Jack Knife, except you.
2. In The Deer Hunter, De Niro was actually supposed to be hunting boar but shot a deer by accident. Michael Cimino changed the title of the film and used the footage.
3. When filming Angel Heart De Niro got very jealous of young actor Mickey Rourke and so when Rourke asked him for advice De Niro told him to take up boxing and plastic surgery.
4. To play Noodles, the Jewish gangster in Once Upon a Time in America, De Niro got his little fellow clipped. Director Sergio Leone found it hilarious and shot a scene of De Niro’s circumcised penis but unfortunately and ironically that scene also had to be cut.
5. Taxi Driver is often cited as Robert De Niro’s most autobiographical film. De Niro was a taxi driver when he was looking for a break as a young man. He also rescued a prostitute from gangsters and shot them up, becoming a local hero. Paul Schrader – the script writer – denies any knowledge of this and said he was freaked out by the coincidence, so much so that he hasn’t written another film since.
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NEW YORK – Robert De Niro is 70 years old today. But how much do you know about him? That’s right! Nothing.
You know nothing. NOTHING! So sit down, shut up, and let the Studio Exec fill your void of a brain with FACTS.
1. Robert De Niro is Australian.
2. De Niro’s favorite director is Martin Scorsese, but due to emotional scenes during the making of Casino, Scorsese and De Niro decide to start seeing other people. Scorsese soon replaced De Niro with Leonardo Di Caprio, but De Niro like a floundering child has found himself passed from one abusive foster home to another. Jay Roach, Justin Zachman and Jon Avnet have been the unworthy recipients of Mr. De Niro’s time.
3. De Niro’s meticulous preparation and devotion to the authenticity of the role is now legendary. During the making of Cape Fear he beat a woman to death just to see how it felt, and during the making of Meet the Parents he watched all of Ben Stiller’s previous films so he could feel the appropriate amount of hatred for Ben Stiller’s character.
4. Robert De Niro has won seventeen Oscars. But all of them were for set design, a little known part of his talent.
5. Whenever De Niro was called on to play a real life character – such as Jake La Motta in Raging Bull – he would chop off the finger of the real person and ingest it as part of his preparation.
Happy Birthday Mr. De Niro will air on HBO at 11 EST.
HOLLYWOOD – Sylvester Stallone‘s Grudge Match has almost finished filming with Robert DeNiro. The film involves a pair of old boxing rivals who step back into the ring to settle once and for all who made the best Vietnam movie.
Alan Arkin plays the aging coach, rescued from a nursing home (along with the rest of the cast), to prepare Stallone for a final epic bout.
Sources close to Mr. Stallone said:
Sly feels very under-appreciated by the critical community. People love The Deer Hunter and put it above Rambo 2, likewise they always give the critical plaudits to Raging Bull and not Rocky. He is seething inside. Expendables was actually an attempt to remake Ronin. Sly hates DeNiro’s guts and my fear is that there are going to be some real punches thrown in the ring.
Bobby DeNiro however pooh-poohed such talk as malicious gossip. ‘I’ve always been a great fan of Sylvester Stallone and we’re great buddies,’ said The Godfather Part Two star. ‘Stop or My Mom Will Shoot is what inspired me to become an actor in the first place.’
‘But you were already an actor when that came out.’
‘Yeah, well, what I mean is it would’ve. You know.’
Grudge Match is released in 2014.
NEW YORK – The Studio Exec can exclusively report that two-time Oscar-winning actor, Robert De Niro, has revealed that he is going to start reading scripts again before committing to film projects.
During a recent interview in his TriBeCa office, De Niro told us that he hasn’t actually read a film script since 1993’s This Boy’s Life. He explained:
Yeah, I just haven’t had time to read scripts and assess the material before committing to a movie. I have been too busy with my production company, my hotels and restaurants. Plus, now I have two young kids to look after! And until recently it hadn’t really been much of a problem. I guess I just figured – ‘Hey! I’m Robert De Niro! The greatest actor of his generation! I can just show up on the day, smirk, mug, smirk again, stick my tongue out, say some stuff until they yell cut and collect my paycheck! Al’s been doing it for YEARS! And the movie will turn out fine and people will pay to see it!’ Right?
The wake-up call came when De Niro was on a flight home from Cannes a few weeks ago and the inflight movie happened to be Red Lights, a film he made in 2012. He wasn’t impressed with what he saw.
“It was total shit,” admits De Niro.
Once back in New York, the actor decided to take a closer look at his recent output, and what he saw shocked him.
I guess you could say I have been asleep at the wheel. Okay, there have been a few good movies in the last twenty years – Heat. Casino. Even Meet the Parents. And sure, Silver Linings Playbook was pretty good. But overall I have to say that I have pissed all over my own legacy from a height. It’s time to make changes in the way I do things.
De Niro is now taking steps to rectify this situation and has made a promise to himself, and his fans, to only act in films that have “something important to say” or “present a genuine acting challenge.”
And this plan will come into effect once De Niro clears his current slate of movies which includes Meet the Fokking Grandparents, Analyze Those, Taxi Driver 2 – Bickle’s Back and Stardust 2: Stardustier.
GENEVA – Today Swiss cinema and cheese expert, Xavier Poulis tries to resolve one of the most difficult question in philosophy: does God exist?
God, Jesus, Mohammad, Buddha, L. Ron Hubbard. We all have different names for God and different relationships to him. Richard Dawkins doesn’t believe he exists and George W. Bush talks to him frequently. One of these intellectual giants is telling ‘le whopper grand’ as we say in the cantons of Switzerland. So I’ve decided to settle the matter once and for all, after which no more talking, etc. Just bide by my words. And enough with the talking and silliness.
Arguments for God.
- Woody Allen’s early output, especially Love and Death and Manhattan.
- Scarlett Johansson.
- Jean Luc Godard.
- The Empire Strikes Back.
- Robert de Niro in Raging Bull and Taxi Driver.
Arguments against God.
- Woody Allen’s later output, especially Scoop and Curse of the Jade Scorpion.
- Scarlett Johansson singing.
- Jean Luc Godard.
- The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, Revenge of the Sith and Ewoks.
- Meet the Parents and Meet the Fockers.
- Adam Sandler.
So there we have it. God doesn’t exist. Carry on.
HOLLYWOOD – Celebrations were announced throughout Hollywood and in Pakistan, Israel, New Zealand, Ecuador and Boston, public holidays were declared. The reason? Frank ‘the new Kubrick’ Coraci and Adam Sandler were together again.
The dream team who brought us the depth of The Waterboy, the Nolan-like mind games of Click and the terrifying meditation on aging to rival only Haneke The Wedding Singer were back together again.
A source close to the inspirational font declared:
Frank has been really down since Here Comes the Boom missed out on the Oscar nominations it had been widely tipped to receive. But he got together with Adam and, after the usual jokes about Frank’s Chariots of the Gods beard, they started thrashing out ideas and it wasn’t long before that peculiar magic began to work.
New York Times critic, Abelard Haverland wrote in an in-depth profile of the pair:
One thinks of the great director / actor pairings, when a peculiar symbiosis creates masterpieces; one thinks of Scorsese and De Niro; Hitchcock and Jimmy Stewart; Woody Allen and Woody Allen. Now we add to that Coraci and Sandler.
The plot outline remains necessarily vague – as with every Coraci film, the maestro shrouds each project in complete secrecy. However, we do know a blind date is involved and will go disastrously wrong, but the mismatched couple will be stuck together probably because they’ve been mistaken for witnesses in the trial of a mob boss or something.
‘This is the audacity Frank has,’ said Haverland. ‘Most people will look at that plot line and think that’s been done a thousand times. It’s a cliche with absolutely nothing surprising to offer. I can close my eyes and see the whole goddam movie. But Frank thinks no you can’t. And he makes it anyway.’
THE SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK: REVIEW – Face from the A Team is more like Mad Murdoch when his wife leaves him and after a brief stint in One Flew Over the Cuckoo Nest goes not so Strictly Ballroom with Katniss Everdeen.
Everyone’s crazy in this well made and well played melodrama. David O. Russell hot off The Fighter continues a winning streak with a kind of slice of life ensemble and keeps his kookie pretty much in the jar. The beats are sometimes predictable, but the screenplay is witty and smart and the acting is generally excellent, including – sit down before you read this – Chris Tucker and – stay sat down – Robert de Niro. Sometimes in a film there comes a moment when a director wins your trust by doing something unusual or avoiding a cliché. In this case there’s a moment when after a bust up in a diner, Bradley Cooper runs after Jennifer Lawrence only to be stopped by the waitress brandishing the check. It is a telling detail that makes the world that the bizarre characters live in solid and believable and grounds some of the more fantastical elements.
HOLLYWOOD – On a breakfast visit to the set of Lincoln and Daniel Day-Lewis is sat in the corner in full costume eating biscuits and gravy with a side order of cornbread. I was about to go over and say hello when Spielberg pulled me to one side. “ I’m worried about Daniel “ he said. “ He hasn’t spoke to anybody for the last three days he just comes into the cafeteria, orders the same meal and sits there reading the bible until it’s time to clock off and we’re way behind schedule”.
I told Steven I’d have a quiet word with him and so I sauntered over to his table and offered him a handshake. “ Mr Lincoln” I said. “It’s a pleasure to meet you.”
Day-Lewis looked up at me, put down his knife and fork and shook my hand “And it’s a pleasure to meet you Sir. Won’t you join me for breakfast?”
I sat down, ordered coffee and he rambled on about emancipation and battle tactics. I played along as you have to when he’s fully absorbed in his character. I remember on the set of ‘In The Name of the Father’ I spent an entire week with him planning an assassination attempt on the British Royal Family. We even went as far as procuring a pound of Semtex and making a replica model of Buckingham Palace before he finally snapped out of it.”
I could tell he’d got a lot worse since back then though. P.T. Anderson had told me that during the filming of ‘There Will be Blood’ Lewis had drank half a pint of crude oil every morning.
I used to a have a lot of time for method actors. When De Niro said he wanted to go to Italy and eat 10 pizza’s a day to bulk up to play Jake LaMotta I said no problem. When Mick Rourke asked me if I could get him some Virgins to sacrifice to prepare for his role in ‘Angel Heart’ I didn’t even raise an eyebrow but the older I’ve got, the less tolerant I’ve become. Not only that but I like to keep Spielberg sweet just in case I ever require the services of a Mossad hit man.
I listened to Day-Lewis for another 20 minutes or so but halfway through his recital of the Gettysburg address I grabbed his fork and stabbed him right through his hand into the wooden table.
“ Listen you stupid bastard “ I said as he cried out in pain. “ You’re costing us a hundred thousand a day with this bullshit and I don’t give a rats ass how many Oscars you’ve won. If you don’t get in front of that camera and do you job within the next hour. The next time you see yourself on screen you’ll be playing Seth Rogans submissive gay partner in a Judd Apatow re-imaging of ‘The 120 days of Sodom’.”
I got up and went to take a piss leaving Day Lewis weeping at the table like a stood up school girl on prom night. When I returned he was laughing and joking with the crew and talking over the next scene with Spielberg. I was going to go over and apologise but I didn’t want to ruin their flow so I snook out the back door and climbed into the waiting limo.
The next day I got a 40 year old bottle of scotch delivered to me with a note from Steven that simply said “I owe you one”. He didn’t. I was just doing my job but it’s good to know that if you ever require the services of an Israeli assassination squad; As you do in this business from time to time. One is but a short phone call away.