Martin Scorsese Circling a Frank Sinatra Biopic With Leondaro DiCaprio and Jennifer Lawrence

Age is (mostly) a state of mind, as is being proven by a slew of older directors still putting out great work. They include Ridley Scott (86 and currently in post-production on Gladiator 2), Francis Ford Coppola (85 and set to screen his long-gestating passion project, Megalopolis, at Cannes), David Cronenberg (81 and set to screen his latest, The Shrouds at Cannes) and the ever-busy Steven Spielberg (77, working on a new sci-fi film with a script from his Jurassic Park scribe David Koepp.)

And that concept of age as merely a mentality is certainly true for Martin Scorsese, the 81-year-old legend who is coming off his epic Killers of the Flower Moon, which was nominated for 10 Oscars last year and is hardly going to be a coda on his remarkable career. Scorsese has a slew of projects he’s eyeing, including shooting two films back-to-back: one about Jesus and the other a Frank Sinatra biopic.

Scorsese isn’t waiting for a studio to sign onto his Life of Jesus film, which is based on Shūsaku Endō’s 1973 book—instead, he’s going to independently finance the film much like he did with his last Endō adaptation, his 2016 film Silence, about Jesuit priests in the 17th century traveling to Japan to search for their mentor. Scorsese is reportedly eyeing one of the stars of Silence, Andrew Garfield, for his Life of Jesus project (it’s unclear if Garfield would play Jesus or one of his disciples). Variety provides details that Life of Jesus is slated to shoot later this in Israel, Egypt, and Italy, but this could change given the fact that Israel is at war with Hamas in Gaza.

As for the Sinatra film, that hinges on whether Sinatra’s daughter, Tina, gives her blessing. Tina Sinatra controls her father’s estate, yet Scorsese is putting together the type of cast that would be hard for nearly anyone to resist—led by his longtime collaborator Leonardo DiCaprio playing Sinatra, and Jennifer Lawrence co-starring as old Blue Eyes’ second wife, the legendary actress Ava Gardner. What’s interesting is that Garnder is the woman whom Sinatra left his first wife for—Nancy Barbato, Tina Sinatra’s mother. Unlike The Life of Jesus, Scorsese’s Sinatra biopic would almost certainly be a huge draw for studios, with Apple, his Killers of the Flower Moon backers, as well as Sony, both in the mix.

And then there’s the collaboration in the offing between Scorsese and Steven Spielberg on a Cape Fear TV series for Apple TV+, with Scorsese and Spielberg producing the series, which is based on both Scorsese’s 1991 film (which Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment produced) and Universal’s 1962 version.

Another common sentiment is that when you love what you do, it’s not work—perhaps that’s what keeps these filmmakers eternally young.

Featured image: NEW YORK, NY – NOVEMBER 19: Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio attend The Museum Of Modern Art Film Benefit Presented By CHANEL: A Tribute To Martin Scorsese on November 19, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Museum of Modern Art)


The Credits

The Credits is an online magazine that tells the story behind the story to celebrate our large and diverse creative community. Focusing on profiles of below-the-line filmmakers, The Credits celebrates the often uncelebrated individuals who are indispensable to the films and TV shows we love.