Martin Scorsese's a name that is synonymous with some of the greatest crime films ever made.
Casino, Goodfellas, Mean Streets, The Departed - all classics and all easily among the best in their genre. However, in more recent years, Scorsese's steered away from it and moved toward different avenues - as is his wont. The Wolf of Wall Street, for example, followed the crazed and hedonistic lifestyle of crooked stockbroker Jordan Belfort whilst his latest film, Silence, follows the work and prosecution of two Jesuit priests in feudal Japan.
However, it looks like Scorsese is making a glorious return to the crime genre with the long-awaited The Irishman, previously titled I Heard You Paint Houses. It's been confirmed that late last night, Scorsese struck a financing deal with STX Entertainment and Paramount that will secure funding for the film and get it out of turnaround, once and for all.
The film, based on the criminal career of Frank 'The Irishman' Sheeran, has been in development for many years and was expected to go into production many times. Based on the novel I Heard You Paint Houses by Charles Brandt, the novel has been adapted by Steven Zaillian, one of the most celebrated screenwriters working today whose previous credits include Moneyball, the US remake of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, Schindler's List, Awakenings and American Gangster.
As well as bringing Scorsese back to the crime genre, it will also reteam the Oscar-winning director with a number of familiar faces - including Robert DeNiro and Harvey Keitel, both of whom starred in Mean Streets back in 1973. As well as this, the film will also see Scorsese working with Al Pacino for the first time in either one's career.
The deal made between Scorsese, STX Entertainment and Paramount is said to be worth close to $50,000,000 with a bidding war breaking out between Fox, Lionsgate and Universal. Paramount will distribute the film in the US with STX Entertainment handling the international rights.
It's early days yet, so naturally no release date has been set, but odds are we'll see the film some time before the end of 2017.