When you think of Martin Scorsese and Al Pacino, two of the greatest filmmakers of all time, your mind likely races to some of their most iconic collaborations. But did you know that it took them a long time to work together? It took them over a decade to finally get on the same page and make a movie. And even after they finally collaborated, it wasn’t an easy process. There were multiple setbacks along the way. But in the end, the results were worth the wait. Learn more about their collaboration in this article and see why it was such a success.
Why did Scorsese and Pacino not work together on a project before The Irishman?
Martin Scorsese and Al Pacino have a long and storied history of collaboration. But before The Irishman, their relationship was fraught with challenges. Here’s what made it so difficult.
For starters, both men were notoriously demanding regarding their film partners. Pacino famously clashed with director Sidney Lumet on his first project together, Serpico, and Scorsese was no different in his early collaborations with Robert De Niro.
“I remember the first time I met Marty,” De Niro said in a 1985 interview with Playboy. “We were filming Taxi Driver, and he stormed out because he didn’t like the conversation I had scripted for him.”
Secondly, both directors tended to work extremely long hours – often 12- or 14-hour days – which could be grating for their collaborators. And though they had undeniable talent and charisma, neither man was particularly adept at working under pressure or with a large crew.
“When we finally got The Godfather together, some people would say it took 10 years because there were always so many problems,” De Niro recalled in the same Playboy interview. “But I don’t think it would’ve been as great of a movie if we’d gotten it right away.”
The Reason for Martin Scorsese and Al Pacino’s Cancelled Project
In 1990, Martin Scorsese and Al Pacino were brought together to work on a project that would have seen the two legendary filmmakers team up for the first time. The project was initially titled “The Last Temptation of Christ” but eventually came to be known as “The Devil’s Advocate”. However, the film never saw the light of day due to the creative differences between the two filmmakers.
According to Pacino, the problem started when Scorsese made the movie in Spanish instead of English. Pacino says, “It was his idea to do it in Spanish because he didn’t like my accent.” It forced Pacino to learn a new language in just a few weeks and put much pressure on him. Additionally, Scorsese wanted to use more contemporary settings and actors instead of traditional religious icons. Ultimately, these disagreements led to the movie being shelved.
However, despite this setback, Scorsese and Pacino remained friends and even collaborated on another movie later in their careers – 2006’s “The Departed”.
Who is Martin Scorsese?
Martin Scorsese is a renowned American film director, producer and screenwriter who has directed some of the most iconic films in history, such as “Goodfellas“, “Taxi Driver“, “Raging Bull“, and “The Departed“. He has also produced many acclaimed films such as “Mean Streets“, “Casino” and “Schindler’s List“. Al Pacino is an Oscar-winning actor and one of Hollywood’s most iconic performers. He is known for his roles in classic films such as “The Godfather“, “Scarface“, and “Scent of a Woman“. They first worked together on the film “The Godfather Part II, ” released in 1974. It took them over 20 years to work on another project together: the film “Dick Tracy”, which was released in 1990.