1990 Robert De Niro
One of the world's most skillful and applauded directors, MARTIN SCORSESE, director of "Mean Streets"..."Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore"..."Taxi Driver". . . "New York, New York".. . "Raging Bull". . ."The Color of Money"..."The Last Temptation of Christ" ... re-unites with two-time Oscar winner ROBERT DE NIRO (in their sixth collaboration) for Warner Bros.' Goodfellas A sweeping, 30-year true story, Goodfellas stars RAY LIOTTA as Henry Hill, a half-Irish, half-Sicilian Brooklyn kid who is "adopted" by neighborhood gangsters at an early age and raised to be a faithful member of their "family."
Goodfellas is based on Nicholas Pileggi's best-selling book Wiseguy, the most intimate account ever printed of life inside what people call the Mafia. Both the book and film accurately document the life of a working mobster--his complex relationships, friendships, camaraderie, romances, outrageous practical jokes and "business" dealings. But gangsters never refer to themselves as gangsters. In Mafia vernacular, insiders are known as either "wiseguys"...or Goodfellas
Goodfellas is produced by Academy Award-winner IRWIN WINKLER ("Rocky," "Round Midnight") and executive produced
by BARBARA DE FINA ("The Color of Money," "The Last Temptation of Christ"). The screenplay is by Pileggi and Scorsese, based on the former's book. The supporting cast includes Oscar nominee JOE PESCI ("Raging Bull," "Lethal Weapon 2") as the hot-headed Tommy DeVito, an essentially small-time, ambitious hood; LORRAINE BRACCO ("Someone to Watch Over Me," "The Dream Team") as Karen, the woman Henry woos and marries; and PAUL SORVINO ("A Touch of Class," "Dick Tracy") as Mafia Don Paul "Paulie" Cicero, a man who has hundreds of gangsters hanging on his every word.
Martin Scorsese first attracted critical attention in 1973 with "Mean Streets," the story of two punk gangsters (Robert De Niro and Harvey Keitel) working their way up the Mafia ladder, general territory the filmmaker explores once again in Goodfellas His later collaborations with De Niro include "Taxi Driver," "New York, New York," "Raging Bull" and "The King of Comedy."
The filmmaker, whose "Raging Bull" was named the best film of the 1980s in several magazine and critics' polls-.- with Scorsese named best director---also pleased audiences and attracted international attention with such films as "The Color of Money," "After Hours," "The Last Temptation of Christ" and the Life Lessons segment of "New York Stories."
Robert De Niro, whose performances have enthralled audiences for nearly two decades, appears in Goodfellas as Ji~nmy Conway, one of the most respected men in organized crime, with his own inimitable style. De Niro's gallery of characters is legendary - his first Oscar-winning performance as the young Vito Corleone in "The Godfather, Part II," Travis Bickle in "Taxi Driver," his second Oscar-winning role as Jake La Motta in "Raging Bull," and the explosive Al Capone in "The Untouchables."
One of the fastest-rising talents of the '90s, Ray Liotta won a Golden Globe nomination for his first screen role as Melanie Griffith's jealous husband in "Something Wild."
He also won critical acclaim for his roles in "Dominick and Eugene" and "Field of Dreams," in which he portrayed Shoeless Joe Jackson.
About the Production
As with millions of others, Nicholas Pileggi's book Wiseguy left an indelible impression on two men who are now responsible for turning it into the film Goodfellas: director Martin Scorsese and producer Irwin Winkler.
A few years ago, on location in Chicago, where he was filming "The Color of Money," Scorsese telephoned Pileggi as soon as he had finished reading the book and told him outright that he wanted to make a movie of it.
"I've been looking for this book for years," Scorsese told Pileggi. Flattered and delighted, the author's reaction was, "I can't think of anyone I'd rather have direct it." Coincidentally, Winkler had optioned Wiseguy and other related Pileggi stories nearly a decade before and was equally enthusiastic about working once again with Scorsese after their collaborations on "New York, New York" and "Raging Bull."