De Niro and Scorsese Eying Autobiographical Biopic of Famed Gangster

Robert De Niro and Martin Scorsese are kicking around the idea of turning their upcoming gangster film into a two-part epic that would also chronicle their history together.

The two film greats have been planning a movie called "The Irishman," about mobster Frank Sheehan, the man who is believed to have killed Jimmy Hoffa.

"It's based on a book called 'I Heard You Paint Houses.' It's a very simple, terrific story about [mobster Frank Sheehan], who supposedly killed Hoffa and Joe Gallo and so on," De Niro told MTV while doing press for his upcoming Tribeca Film Festival.

"We have a more ambitious idea, hopefully, to make it a two-part type of film or two films," he continued. "It's an idea that came about from Eric Roth to combine these movies using the footage from 'Paint Houses' to do another kind of a [film that is] reminiscent of a kind of '8 1/2,' 'La Dolce Vita,' [a] certain kind of biographical, semi-biographical type of Hollywood movie — a director and the actor — based on things Marty and I have experienced and kind of overlapping them."

The two men have made eight films together, including classics like "Mean Streets," "Taxi Driver" and "Goodfellas." Their last collaboration was some 15 years ago, when they made "Casino," before Scorsese left De Niro for a younger man, Leonard DiCaprio.

Since then, Scorsese hasn't reached the heights of his glorious past, he has finally won an Oscar, for "The Aviator," and made some very good films, while De Niro has spent much of his time slumming in tired comedies like the "Meet the Parents" franchise. A reunion with Scorsese could be just what he needs to get back into the swing of things.

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