First look at Martin Scorsese's 'The Irishman' shows de-aged De Niro and Pacino

Ben Arnold
Ray Romano, Al Pacino and Robert De Niro in The Irishman (Credit: Netflix)

The holy trinity of gangster movie actors show up in the new shots from Martin Scorsese's hotly anticipated The Irishman.

Al Pacino, Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci all appear in the stills from the hugely ambitious mob flick, which is now confirmed to open the New York Film Festival on September 27, before launching on Netflix “this Autumn”.

In one, Robert De Niro's Frank 'The Irishman' Sheeran, a high-ranking member of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters union, escorts his old friend and union leader Jimmy Hoffa through a press scrum, with Ray Romano's Bill Bufalino, the union's attorney.

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And then in another snapshot, De Niro's Sheeran is seen in a brooding bar scene with Joe Pesci's Russell Bufalino, the boss of the Bufalino crime family. The photos give us our first look at the film’s de-aging VFX, which has been used to show the actors in their younger days.

Joe Pesci and Robert De Niro in The Irishman (Credit: Netflix)
Scorsese's VFX team has rolled back the years on Robert De Niro for The Irishman. (Ira L. Black/Corbis via Getty Images/Netflix)

Produced by Netflix, it will tell the story of Sheeran, who was also a prolific mob hitman as well as a union rep, looking back on his life as an old man, notably his 'connection' to the disappearance in 1975 of Hoffa. He was never seen again.

With the action spanning decades, Netflix reportedly poured $200 million into the movie's budget, according to Variety, though the streaming service has now claimed that the figure is more like $160 million.

That's the same amount of money spent on Spider-Man: Far From Home, and a staggering budget for a drama movie.

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But it's thought that a lengthy post-production process, plus the extensive use of CGI technology to de-age the movie's stars, sent budgets sky-rocketing.

Whatever the case, having a Scorsese movie on the books is pretty invaluable for the streaming studio, particularly one with an cast as eye-popping as this (not to mention a project which brought Pesci out of retirement).

Also starring Harvey Keitel, Bobby Cannanvale, Anna Paquin, Kathrine Narducci, Stephen Graham, Domenick Lombardozzi and Jesse Plemons, it will be theatrically released and then streamed on Netflix in late 2019.