What is De Niro Talking about? 'The Irishman' is Two Movies and Incorporates '8 1/2'?

I don't ask the question in the headline wondering if Robert De Niro is crazy when he talks about what he and Martin Scorsese have envisioned for the previously announced The Irishman based on Charles Brandt's 2004 book "I Heard You Paint Houses". I ask because I am hoping someone can make sense of what he's trying to put together with scripts by Steve Zaillan and Eric Roth combining a mob drama with an autobiographical story reminiscent of Federico Fellini's La Dolce Vita and 8 1/2.

In The Irishman De Niro would play Frank "the Irishman" Sheeran, who is reputed to have carried out more than 25 mob murders.

Here is the short 97-second MTV video interview. Any ideas in the comments would be fascinating to read.

  • Senor Doulie

    Bobby (that's what we -- his friends call him) is on the good stuff

  • Carson Dyle

    I think he's trying to say that there will be "The Irishman", penned by Zaillian, and another film, written by Eric Roth, that will be a sort of autobiographical film based on De Niro and Scorsese's long collaboration together, which will intersperse footage from "The Irishman".

    Either that or it's something else entirely.

  • americanrequiem

    ummm, the irishman has been around for a while but no clue what else he could be talking about

  • Matt B.

    While I admire his talent as an actor, DeNiro seems totally unable to communicate in a simple live interview format. He comes across the same way when he's on Letterman - without a script and a director, he's lost.

  • http://www.themoviescene.co.uk AW

    Man does De Niro struggle to think on his feet in an interview. Anyway I see it that there will be two movies one which is a dramatisation of the story and then a second more of a documentary style looking at the facts and interviews which Charles Brandt collected in writing the book.

  • elflerk

    Huh? I didn't even know about this film. Scorsese and De Niro back together! Yuhuu!

  • http://www.anomalousmaterial.com/movies/ Red

    This interview confuses the hell out of me. I've read the book, and thought it was fantastic. And while the book IS more of an autobiography about the Irishman's life than a mob drama, the 8 1/2 comparison just threw me for a loop.

    And I'm not a huge fan of De Niro playing the role of the Irishman. He certainly isn't big enough for the role nor does he have the delivery style required for Sheeran, and seems he would've been a better fit as Brandt.

  • Douglas C. Loughran

    Having read the book "I Heard You Paint Houses" I can see DeNiro playing a very impressive portrayal of Frank Sheeran despite the fact Sheeran was 6'4" and DeNiro is only 5'9". DeNiro has a good stage presence and gives the appearance of being much bigger than he is.The book although a biography of Frank Sheeran has a lot of situations in Sheerans life to be molded into one of DeNiros best movies.With the addition of Pesci,Pacino,and Harvey Kietel this movie has a lot of potential to surprise many on how good it will be.I'm fully confident it be one of DeNiros best.