Scorsese Rumored To Be Remaking Taxi Driver With De Niro In Tow
BY TODD GILCHRIST
The big news at the Berlin Film Festival in the last few days has been the rumored collaboration between Martin Scorsese and Lars Von Trier, who has evidently challenged the Academy Award-winning director to remake his classic film “Taxi Driver” according to the same rules he imposed on Danish director Jorgen Leth for the 2003 film “The Five Obstructions.” Von Trier asked Leth to remake his own 1967 film “The Perfect Human” five times with different demands each time, and while the project has yet to be officially confirmed, Scorsese has apparently agreed to do the same with his 1976 film – with its star, Robert De Niro, back behind the wheel as well.
Scorsese himself has said nothing yet, but Von Trier’s business partner Peter Aalbeck Jensen neither confirmed nor denied the rumors in an interview with a Danish newpaper, adding “there will be a statement shortly.” Meanwhile, another unnamed Danish source is said to have confirmed the collaboration.
Von Trier is the pioneer of the Dogme 95 filmmaking movement, which instituted a series of limitations and philosophical requirements for filmmakers in order to return the medium to a more pure and supposedly meaningful place. Ironically, Von Trier never himself made a pure Dogme film. How Scorsese will adapt to Von Trier’s yet-to-be-determined limitations and requirements remains to be seen, but what seems of more interest is how eagerly De Niro will embrace them, if he participates. Although he was certainly the consummate method actor of his generation, he seems less interested now in immersing himself in roles than slipping easily into ones that trade upon his familiar persona.
Officially, Von Trier’s next project is supposed to be a science fiction film entitled Melancholia. Scorsese, meanwhile, is in pre-production on a 3D adaptation of Brian Selznick’s novel “The Invention of Hugo Cabret.” De Niro supposedly has several projects in the hopper, including another “Fockers” film.