By Simon Dang | The Playlist December 16, 2010 at 3:10AM
What a reunion this could possibly be: Veteran actor Harvey Keitel is now reported to also be on board with Martin Scorsese's upcoming adaptation of "I Heard You Paint Houses" -- titled "The Irishman" -- which already boasts a Scorsese Who's Who cast of Robert De Niro, Al Pacino and Joe Pesci.
The "Mean Streets" and "Taxi Driver" actor has been somewhat away from a the spotlight in recent years but will be seen alongside De Niro in Paul Weitz's upcoming comedy sequel "Little Fockers." The news of his apparent casting in the film seems a bit tenuous. De Niro had no problem listing off the names of his co-stars in "The Irishman" to MTV and it seems a little odd he would forget about his 'Fockers' co-star Keitel. Moreover, it seems that Roger Friedman might be making a leap about something that might not actually be there. That said, obviously Scorsese and Keitel have worked together multiple times and are mutual admirers so it wouldn't be surprising if there was a role for him there.
Last we heard, the adaptation of Charles Brandt's novel is shaping up for a 2011 production at the soonest -- that is, of course, if financing comes together but given the starry cast, that shouldn't be a problem.
"The Irishman" will follow the story of Frank Sheeran, the titular 'Irishman,' a WWII veteran who led a colorful life as a high ranking officer in the International Brotherhood of Teamsters while also dabbling in organized crime as a highly-sought-after hitman. He reportedly also had ties to the deaths of President Kennedy and Jimmy Hoffa. No word on which actors will portray what characters in the story, though De Niro has been attached to play the lead role since early in its conception.
De Niro also recently took to his "Little Fockers" press tour to put doubt on the companion feature to "The Irishman" scripted by Eric Roth which was originally described as being "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 [De Niro] have experienced and kind of overlapping them." A real shame as the idea was fascinating, particularly as Scorsese is such a devotee to Fellini and Italian cinema in general.
Of course, the pending production of "The Irishman" looks to have shaken up Scorsese's schedule a little with previous plans to follow his currently in-production 3-D action-adventurer "Hugo Cabret" with his gestating Jesuit priest tale "Silence," and then "The Irishman" presumably revised. We've got our fingers crossed that "Silence," which once had Daniel Day-Lewis, Benicio Del Toro and Gael Garcia Bernal attached, is still in the works.