March 18 2015

Scarface, the gangster movie that helped define the Hollywood pre-code era has already been successfully remade once, but can another remake have the same kind of impact as the 1932 and 1983 movies had on the gangster genre?

 

Well it looks as though we’re finally going to be given the opportunity to find out.

 

Universal has appointed Jonathan Herman (co-writer of Straight Outta Compton) to redraft the screenplay. The script has been kicking around for a while, written by Paul Attanasio (Donnie Brasco) and David Ayer (Suicide Squad) and is said to stick to the immigrant American Dream narrative used in the Howard Hawks original and Oliver Stone’s remake, but relocating the story to Los Angles. Little is known of the story so far other than the titular Scarface will again be called Tony but he is this time a Mexican who rises and falls in the LA criminal underworld.

 

Chilean filmmaker Pablo Larraín gets to sit his ass in the director’s chair, but there is no word yet on who will be cast in the leading role. Al Pacino owned Scarface and it will be a brave soul who steps into Tony Montana’s shoes after all “Come on, The last time you gonna see a bad guy like this again, let me tell you.

March 15 2015

The film guys at Time Out have put their collective heads together and come up with a list which represents what they believe to be the Top 50 gangster and crime flicks ever made. Looking down the list it's clear some pretty bold choices were made by someone. Stanley Kubrick's ‘The Killing' for example is ranked at No.2 on the list and only 1 place above the film it hugely influenced 'Reservoir Dogs'. While The Killing is a damn fine movie, is it finer than The Godfather Part 2 or Goodfellas? Each to their own and that’s why this list is so cool; Dave Calhoun, Cath Clarke, David Ehrlich, Tom Huddleston and Joshua Rothkopf have not been afraid to be different.

 

How about Sexy Beast with Ray Winston and Sir Ben Kingsley in the top 10? Again terrific film, but even in terms of just British gangster flicks, is it better than The Long Good Friday, Snatch or Get Carter?

 

Check out the full list below and let us know if you agree with their choices or if you’re left wondering where The Public Enemy (1931), White Heat (1949) or Carlito’s Way (1993) and other notable greats are. Read the full piece here http://www.timeout.com/chicago/movies/the-50-best-gangster-movies-of-all-time

 

1        The Godfather (1972)

2        The Killing (1956)

3        Reservoir Dogs (1992)

4        Goodfellas (1990)

5        Mean Streets (1973)

6        Bonnie and Clyde (1967)

7        The Godfather Part II (1974)

8        Miller’s Crossing (1990)

9        Once Upon a Time in America (1984)

10      Sexy Beast (2000)

11      Branded to Kill (1967)

12      Pulp Fiction (1994)

13      Gomorrah (2008)

14      Eastern Promises (2007)

15      Night and the City (1950)

16      Rififi (1955)

17      Le Doulos (1962)

18      A History of Violence (2005)

19      The Long Good Friday (1980)

20      Pale Flower (1964)

21      The Untouchables (1987)

22      The Sting (1973)

23      Breathless (1960)

24      Boyz n the Hood (1991)

25      On the Waterfront (1954)

26      Performance (1970)

27      The Departed (2006)

28      The Warriors (1979)

29      Scarface (1983)

30      Scarface (1932)

31      Bullets Over Broadway (1994)

32      The French Connection (1971)

33      City of God (2002)

34      King of New York (1990)

35      The American Friend (1977)

36      No Country for Old Men (2007)

37      Touch of Evil (1958)

38      Casino (1995)

39      Gun Crazy (1950)

40      Le Cercle Rouge (1970)

41      Kids Return (1996)

42      Léon: The Professional (1994)

43      A Better Tomorrow (1986)

44      Get Carter (1971)

45      The League of Gentlemen (1960)

46      Fargo (1996)

47      The Testament of Dr. Mabuse (1933)

48      Bottle Rocket (1996)

49      Brighton Rock (1947)

50      In Bruges (2008)

February 23 2015

More gangsta than gangster, but Straight Outta Compton is a biopic of the rise and fall of the phenomenal hip-hop outfit NWA (Niggaz With Attitudez) and it’s hitting the big screen this summer.

 

Taken from straightouttacompton.com

 

In the mid-1980s, the streets of Compton, California, were some of the most dangerous in the country.  When five young men translated their experiences growing up into brutally honest music that rebelled against abusive authority, they gave an explosive voice to a silenced generation.  Following the meteoric rise and fall of N.W.A., Straight Outta Compton tells the astonishing story of how these young men revolutionized music and pop culture forever the moment they told the world the truth about life in the hood and ignited a cultural war.

 

Starring O’Shea Jackson Jr., Corey Hawkins and Jason Mitchell as Ice Cube, Dr. Dre and Eazy-E, Straight Outta Compton is directed by F. Gary Gray (Friday, Set It Off, The Italian Job).  The drama is produced by original N.W.A. members Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, who are joined by fellow producers Matt Alvarez and Tomica Woods-Wright.  Will Packer serves as executive producer of the film alongside Gray.

 

Check out the trailer here http://www.straightouttacompton.com/#home

 

Image courtesy of Universal Studies; Legendary Pictures; Cube Vision Productions; and Will Packer Productions

December 31 2014

When its five season run came to an end last year, fans of the critically acclaimed Boardwalk Empire felt the HBO prohibition era gangster series came to an end all too soon – but fear not, we may not have seen the last of Nucky Thompson on our screens. Executive Producer for the show Mark Wahlberg (also Academy Award nominee for The Departed) has spoken recently about his plan to make a Boardwalk Empire movie. And that’s not all. He also wants Martin Scorsese to direct it, Marty was also an Executive Producer on the show and directed the award winning and much heralded pilot episode.

 

Mark Wahlberg while talking to Ralphie Aversa on New York radio station 95.5 PLJ, stated, when asked about Boardwalk Empire that "My next goal now is to get the movie made and start talking to Martin Scorsese about directing it." While it’s a little early to start getting excited, Wahlberg does have form in this area. As an executive producer on the HBO series Entourage he helped to turn the hit show in to a movie for the big screen with Entourage the movie scheduled to hit the cinema later this year. 

 

(Image by Hugh Jazz - Deviant Art)

November 12 2014

The house that featured in the 1972 gangster classic The Godfather and was the scene of Connie's wedding and some memorable scenes with Don Vito Corleone is now up for sale. $2.895 million will get you a 5 bedroom 6,248 sqft English Tudor home at 110 Longfellow Ave. in Staten Island, N.Y. You can check out the full listing here at here. Hope someone has cleaned the writing of the kitchen cupboards.

November 03, 2014

Jake Gyllenhaal has signed on to star as real life international drug smuggler Max Mermelstein in Antoine Fuqua’s movie The Man Who Made it Snow. The movie is to be based on Mermelstein’s 1990 autobiography of the same name which tells the tale of how he became a lynch-pin in Pablo Escobar’s Colombian Medellín Cartel and later entered the United States Federal Witness Protection Program providing evidence to the DEA.

 

The screenplay of Mermelstein’s autobiography has been written by Brent Tabor. Tabor acquired the rights to the book some time ago and met the main man back in 2008 shortly before he succumbed to cancer at the age of 65.

 

Antoine Fuqua (Training Day, The Equaliser) is currently wrapping up work on South Paw which also stars Jake Gyllenhaal (Donnie Darko; Zodiac) as a boxer punching his way to the top. The Man Who Made it Snow is expected to go into production late next year with a 2016 release.

October 21, 2014

Frank Sivero veteran of classic (and some not so classic) gangster movies including The Godfather Part II (Genco Abbandando) and Goodfellas (Frank Carbone) has filed a lawsuit against Fox Television Studios. The Character of Louie, a Springfield mobster who works for Fat Tony is alleged to be based on Frank Sivero and more particular his portrayal of Frank Carbone on Goodfellas. Louie first appeared the Simpsons episode ‘Bart the Murderer’ in 1991 and has remained a semi-recurring character ever-since.

 

The substance for this suit comes from the late 1980s when Simpsons writers allegedly lived next door to Sivero in a San Fernando Valley apartment complex during the time he was developing the character of Frank Carbone and filming Goodfellas. Louie’s likeness and mannerisms bare similarity to Sivero, but does this substantiate a lawsuit of $250 million? The lawsuit breaks down like this: $50 million in damages to loss of the likeness; $100 million for improper interference; $50 million for taking his confidential idea; and $50 million in exemplary damages over the idea.

 

Sivero does have form. Check this out… Sivero sues deli over sandwich

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Gangster Flick News

Future Gangster Flicks

(that we're excited about)

Black Mass

Release date: Sept 18th 2015

Director Scott Cooper

Starring: Johnny Depp & Benedict Cumberbatch; 

Based on the book Black Mass by Dick Lehr and Gerard O'Neill that tells the story of Whitey Bulger - an Irish mob boss from Boston.

Legend

Release date: 2015

Director Brian Helgeland

Starring: Tom Hardy & Emily Browning 

The movie is about the rise and fall of the notorious Kray twins, Ronald and Reggie as they terrorise London during the 1950s and 1960s.

The Irishman

Release date: 2016

Director Martin Scorsese

Starring: Al Pacino, Robert De Niro & Joe Pesci 

The movie is based on the book I Hear you Paint Houses' By Charles Brandt all about Frank Sheeran  - a connected guy and the alleged killer of Jimmy Hoffa and Joe Gallo.

Scarpa

Release date: 2015

Director Brad Furman

Starring: Sylvester Stallone 

Written by Nicholas Peleggi, this flick is about the former capo and hitman in the Colombo crime family Greg 'The Grim Reaper' Scarpa who is alleged to have clipped 50 guys before .working with the FBI