Martin Scorsese reveals he turned down two massive films in the 80s

Martin Scorsese has opened up about turning down two big movie opportunities back in the 1980s.

Speaking in a recent interview with Deadline, the director shed some light on decisions made almost four decades ago which ultimately shaped the course of his career.

In a recent chat with Deadline, legendary director Martin Scorsese reflects on his long career and some of the movies that almost were.

Following the disappointing reception of his 1982 film, The King of Comedy, Scorsese revealed he considered “working in a studio situation where everything had to be discussed and figured out”.

Consequently, he was sent many screenplays, including the likes of the Harrison Ford-starring thriller Witness, (ultimately directed by Peter Weir), as well as the 1984 comedy Beverly Hills Cop starring Eddie Murphy.

“I was getting many scripts,” Scorsese described. “Witness, Beverly Hills Cop – there were a lot. But I didn’t want to make those. Then you choose your course. It’s a harder course.” 

Scorsese also revealed that after his movie The Last Temptation of Christ was initially shut down, Robert De Niro offered to play the role of Jesus Christ to help the film get made. The movie ended up coming out in 1988, with Willem Dafoe playing the role.

“Out of respect for everyone, including Bob, we did have a conversation but I knew that was not his kind of role,” Scorsese said. “He did tell me, listen, if you have trouble getting it made, I’ll do it for you.” 

Scorsese’s latest movie, The Irishman came out last year to critical acclaim.

Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro will star in the director’s next movie, Killers of the Flower Moon. The film is an adaptation of the best-selling non-fiction novel by the American journalist, David Grann.

Check out the trailer for The Irishman below.

While you’re here: check out the 10 must-see ’80s movies to watch before you die