After the Venice and initial Toronto festival announcement, there was much nail-biting over when the general public would finally see it, but it was revealed today that Martin Scorsese’s long-in-post-production mob story The Irishman will make its world premiere as the Opening Night film of the 57th New York Film Festival, which takes place September 27 – October 13.
The Irishman is based on the book I Heard You Paint Houses and swirls around the life and crimes of Frank “The Irishman” Sheeran (two-time Academy Award winner Robert De Niro), best known for his alleged involvement in the death of Jimmy Hoffa. The all-star film also includes Academy Award winners Al Pacino, Joe Pesci, and Anna Paquin with Harvey Keitel, Ray Romano, and Bobby Cannavale.
The official synopsis:
The Irishman is a richly textured epic of American crime, a dense, complex story told with astonishing fluidity. Based on Charles Brandt’s nonfiction book I Heard You Paint Houses, it is a film about friendship and loyalty between men who commit unspeakable acts and turn on a dime against each other, and the possibility of redemption in a world where it seems as distant as the moon. The roster of talent behind and in front of the camera is astonishing, and at the core of The Irishman are four great artists collectively hitting a new peak: Joe Pesci as Pennsylvania mob boss Russell Bufalino, Al Pacino as Teamsters president Jimmy Hoffa, and Robert De Niro as their right-hand man, Frank Sheeran, each working in the closest harmony imaginable with the film’s incomparable creator, Martin Scorsese.
“The Irishman is so many things: rich, funny, troubling, entertaining and, like all great movies, absolutely singular,” said New York Film Festival Director and Selection Committee Chair Kent Jones. “It’s the work of masters, made with a command of the art of cinema that I’ve seen very rarely in my lifetime, and it plays out at a level of subtlety and human intimacy that truly stunned me. All I can say is that the minute it was over my immediate reaction was that I wanted to watch it all over again.”
“It’s an incredible honor that The Irishman has been selected as the Opening Night of the New York Film Festival. I greatly admire the bold and visionary selections that the festival presents to audiences year after year,” said Martin Scorsese. “The festival is critical to bringing awareness to cinema from around the world. I am grateful to have the opportunity to premiere my new picture in New York alongside my wonderful cast and crew.”
Following its premiere at the New York Film Festival, Netflix will give The Irishman a theatrical release (date currently unknown) ahead of its streaming debut.
The main slate will be announced on August 6th.