The Irishman is the Avengers of iconic mob movies. There’s Martin Scorsese behind the camera. Robert De Niro in the spotlight. Joe Pesci, out of retirement, to reunite with his Goodfellas star. Al Pacino completes the trifecta, having starred with De Niro in The Godfather Part II. Harvey Keitel, Bobby Cannavale, Anna Paquin, Jesse Plemons, and uh, Ray Romano are expected to pop into the story of a mob hitman’s life and times. It’s a blockbuster of a certain breed — and it’s coming to Netflix this fall.
After spending years developing the movie at Paramount Pictures, Scorsese eventually took The Irishman to Netflix, which could afford the giant budget required to de-age De Niro, Pesci, and Pacino so they can play younger versions of themselves. The story adapts the 2004 nonfiction bestseller, I Heard You Paint Houses, which saw author Charles Brandt peeling back the layers of Frank Sheeran (played by De Niro), a mob hitman with close ties to New York labor unions who reportedly killed Jimmy Hoffa (portrayed by Pacino) in 1975.
The film version, written by Steven Zaillian (Gangs of New York, HBO’s The Night Of) finds an elder Sheeran reflecting on his entire life, allowing De Niro to go full Gemini Man. In the book, Sheeran claims to have pulled some strings during the Bay of Pigs invasion and says he knew about the plans to assassinate JFK, so things should get interesting!
As with many of Netflix’s high-profile releases, The Irishman will make a theatrical run — priming it for Oscar season — before finding its way to the streaming service. No official release date is announced in the first trailer for the film, but the stacked bill is due this fall, after premiering at the New York Film Festival on Sept. 27.