It’s a shame that the Martin Scorsese film The Irishman did not get a theatrical release. In the 80s and 90s, that would’ve been unfathomable. Heck, it would’ve been unfathomable even two years ago. But, the landscape of cinema has changed drastically. Which is why no studio wanted to produce/distribute Scorsese’s latest film. A $US 150 million budget for a meditative, character-driven, deliberately paced gangster film would’ve been to many, a massive financial risk.
Fortunately for Martin Scorsese, Netflix decided to pick up his project. It all worked out for the best, as I’m confident (but sad) that The Irishman would’ve bombed at the box office. On Netflix, it managed to find a niche audience and then some. These days, if your film is going to cost $US 150 million dollars, you better make sure it’s about men and women in tights kicking alien butt. Or is titled Fast and Furious.
One would assume that Scorsese’s next project would be of a more conservative budget. That way he would get a theatrical run and find an audience, especially if it’s released during the fall. However, it looks like once again, Scorsese’s budget has ballooned to a ridiculous degree that the legendary director is again turning to streaming platforms to bail him out.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Martin Scorsese’s representatives are in negotiations with Netflix and Apple to produce and/or distribute Killers of the Flower Moon. The Leonardo DiCaprio starrer set up at Paramount but the studio is reportedly growing more and more unhappy at Scorsese’s ballooning budget. As of right now, the film is estimated to cost around $US 200 million, which makes no economic sense for studios (refer to point about men in tights).
The Scorsese film is based on the award-winning crime book by David Grann, titled “Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI.” The book is about the members of an Native American tribe and their murders that started a massive federal investigation.
The film will also star Scorsese’s frequent collaborator, Robert De Niro.