Al Pacino was born in East Harlem in 1940 and grew up in the Bronx. Martin Scorsese was born in Queens in 1942 and went to high school in the Bronx. Pacino broke through in 1972, when he starred in Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather, the Italian-American epic that re-invented a genre. Scorsese made his name with 1973’s Mean Streets, and went on to direct Goodfellas, one of the most iconic Mafia films of all time. Pacino has been nominated for eight Academy Awards, winning for 1992’s Scent of a Woman. Scorsese has been nominated as a director six times, winning for 2006’s The Departed. The two revered artists seem to share so much biographical and cinematic DNA that it’s hard to believe that they’ve never actually worked together. What’s more, according to an interview that Pacino gave in 1997, they didn’t even know each other at that point. How is that possible? I mean, Leonardo DiCaprio has been in four Scorsese films in eight years, and Al Pacino never once huddled with Scorsese at the height of their skills in the 1970s or 1980s to discuss a project? Forgetaboutit!
This needs to be remedied, and fortunately, it might be soon, since Scorsese once floated the idea of casting Pacino with Robert De Niro in a Frank Sinatra/Dean Martin biopic, and there are new rumors of the trio joining forces for the crime thriller, The Irishman. Pacino said in 2002 that working with Scorsese is his “ultimate goal,” but why has it taken so long? Theories?
While Al and Marty work out the details, let’s look ahead and play matchmaker on other actor/director pairings that need to happen sooner rather than later. Angelina Jolie? Follow Brad’s lead and work with David Fincher. Tom Hanks? Call Clint Eastwood. Johnny Depp? Coen brothers on Line 2. Are there other artists out there who you’d think have worked together before, but haven’t and need to?