Martin Scorsese's new film, The Irishman, falls into a familiar territory for the director. He works with actors he knows as well as Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci, and the content is about organized crime, in particular the crowd, a subject that the director has faced with great success in the past.
However, The Irishman not it is entirely a reconstruction of things we have seen before by Martin Scorsese. The director made a big leap into the unknown when he decided to use the digital effect to make his actors age for the sequences of the film that took place decades before the others. In a new Netflix special, The Irishman: In Conversation , where Scorsese, De Niro, Pesci and Al Pacino all talk about the experience of doing The Irishman , Scorsese admits that part of the reason he was open to technology was that the alternative would be a lot of work …
Once we had the script, at some point the scenes, the flashbacks, which included almost Bob as half the image, should have been reproduced by younger actors . So then I said, “What will I do? Do I have to explain everything to them? “
For Martin Scorsese, the idea of clearly involving young actors did not have much appeal. Finding good actors who vaguely resembled his stars probably wouldn't have been a big deal, but it seems that the director thought that convincing one of them to perform in a young Robert De Niro could simply be too much
Scorsese has worked so often with these actors that everyone knows what others are capable of and what everyone is looking for. The director should have started over and taught these new guys what to do and how to do it, and Martin Scorsese obviously felt it would be a lot of work.
So when the visual effects supervisor Pablo Helman suggested the de-aging of the digital effects for Irish , Martin Scorsese was actually quite open to using these significant effects for his film. It seems that the director's problem was not to use the technology itself, but the way it had to work.
So, we're shooting in Taiwan and Pablo comes to meet me at ILM. He said, “You know, I'm working on this thing to make people younger in the photos.” I said, “Yes, I heard about it.” I mean, I know you do it in
You do Star Wars in all the other effects films. And he said, “Well, you know, all about Irishman this is the first time it will be done . I said, “Wait a minute, wait a minute,” I said, “this is a good idea. The only thing is if I have boys, someone, in the scenes of this type of film that talk among you and you have tennis balls in your face, do you understand what I mean Joe [Pesci]? I think he loses …
Martin Scorsese did not want the aging effects apparatus to hinder the actors' performances. In particular, Joe Pesci states that trying to act normally while wearing motion detection equipment would probably have been difficult. Certainly actors like Pesci and De Niro don't have much experience working with that kind of technology.
Martin Scorsese told Helman that he could not use it if electronics would hinder the actors.
They showed me that it is almost an automaton of some kind. You have all kinds of equipment. I said: “The fact is that they must see each other, play with each other. Come back when there are no tennis balls. “And he came back.
Industrial Light & Magic had come up with a way to make de-aging work with markers that would have been invisible to the actors, allowing them to give their performances unencumbered. Once everything worked the way the director wanted, he had no problem using it.
Seeing the technology usually employed in superhero action movies in a Martin Scorsese drama may be unexpected, but it was necessary to allow acotrs to perform at their best, and almost all accounts, it works.