A New The Irishman Featurette Focuses on The Incredible Cast

To say that Martin Scorsese’s new film The Irishman is a movie by a heavyweight and starring heavyweights would be putting it mildly. The legendary auteur has assembled yet another incredible cast (Scorsese has never struggled to attract talent), yet The Irishman‘s ensemble feels almost valedictory. De Niro. Pescio. And, for the first time, Pacino starring in a Scorsese film. And these are just your three leads. The rest of the cast is gangbusters, too. Harvey Keitel, Ray Romano, Bobby Cannavale, Anna Paquin, Stephen Graham, Stephanie Kurtzuba, Jack Huston, Kathrine Narducci, Jesse Plemons, Domenick Lombardozzi, Paul Herman, Gary Basaraba, and Marin Ireland.

Netflix has released a new featurette to highlight the work of these iconic performers. Simply titled “The Acting,” the new video shines a light on the incredible work of cast who, in the case of the aforementioned leads, were playing versions of their character spread over many decades. Based on “I Heard You Paint Houses,” the narrative nonfiction book by homicide detective Charles Brandt, The Irishman centers on Frank Sheeran (Robert De Niro) who, wheelchair-bound in a rest home, reflects on his life as a hitman for the mob, and on the relationships he made in the process. Those include his close ties to Sicilian-American mobster Russell Bufalino (Joe Pesci) and Teamsters head Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino). The story’s 30-year scope meant that Scorsese would be relying on technology so that De Niro, Pesci and Pacino could play their younger selves. 

The new featurette highlights their performances, with folks like producers Emma Tillinger Koskoff and Jane Rosenthal talking about how it’s a “once-in-a-career” opportunity to assemble a group of this caliber. Scorsese is here, too, talking about his cast, including getting Pesci for the role of Buffalino and the joy of watching De Niro and Pacino finally together in a substantial way. (They were co-stars in Michael Mann’s excellent 1995 heist film Heat, but only shared one key scene together.)

You love film, you love great acting, you’re going to love this featurette. Check it out here:

The Irishman is now playing in limited theatrical release and opens in more theaters next week. Then it debuts on Netflix on November 27th.

For more on The Irishman, check out our interview with The Irishman cinematographer Rodrigo Prieto and producer Emma Tillinger Koskoff.

Featured image: Martin Scorsese directs Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci in a scene from The Irishman. Photo Credit: Niko Tavernise.© 2019 Netlfix US, LLC. All rights reserved.


Bryan Abrams

Bryan Abrams is the Editor-in-chief of The Credits. He's run the site since its launch in 2012. He lives in New York.